While digital consumption may be on the rise in the Kingdom, traditional media continues to play a major role in the daily lives of residents. That’s according to our latest study on the perceptions associated with a brand by the media it advertises on, as well as the changing media habits across generations in Saudi Arabia.
Unsurprisingly, there was a difference in the media consumption behaviors reported by respondents aged 18-24 and those aged 25-44, with the younger demographic accessing most content online now, either through mobile, the Internet or social media. On the other hand, the previous generation largely agree that the pleasurable experience of holding and flipping through a printed newspaper has not faded. This claim was made despite the majority also mentioning they considered the medium much less today, with 60% stating they prefer to consume content online than in newspapers due to mobility, speed and accessibility.
Furthermore, the study found that Saudi consumers continue to be influenced by ads they see in print, especially when it comes to discounts and offers, making certain brands highly associated with advertising in newspapers. Ads for categories such as grocery stores and hypermarkets were found to be more relevant in newspapers than online.
Based on these findings, the importance of finding the right balance between digital and traditional media that suits the needs of your brand and its audiences, is evident. However, digital has already become the predominant behavior among the significant younger demographic and is quickly being embraced as a “way of life” by all generations. Therefore, while the importance of advertising in newspapers remains high for brands in certain categories, they must also seek innovative ways to communicate with all their consumers going forwards. This could even be in the form of digital support to traditional campaigns, to begin with.
While the future may undoubtedly be digital, current research indicates that there is still a role for traditional media in the Kingdom and brands need to do their due diligence to reach all their audiences.