Long-term, in-depth market analyses based on media market studies

Date of publication: September 1, 1994

Abstract:

In practically all countries that are oriented towards the market economy, media coverage and the composition of media users are ascertained on a regular basis within the framework of ambitious research projects. Along with detailed demographic criteria, consumer and psychographic characteristics have become increasingly important in defining target groups for advertising purposes, with the aim of attaining more highly differentiated target groups and stemming wasted coverage to the greatest possible extent. As an international comparison shows, there are practically no leading media studies today that do not ascertain at least a few important consumer segments. This paper will demonstrate how comprehensive, high quality and reasonably priced market research can be conducted in various consumption areas based on secondary analyses of media market studies, plus by means of follow-up surveys among consumer segments previously defined in the media market study. The analyses focus first of all on long-term changes in consumer segments, for example, in the private market for personal computers, the market for cars, tobacco products and pilsener beer and in the photography market—or in the readership for certain magazine categories. The skiing market will then be examined with regard to both long-term changes in consumer composition and the market behavior in 1989 and 1993 of respondents who had been identified as skiers in the media market analysis. The present paper will outline the possibilities and limitations of this research approach, showing how the data and conclusions from various types of studies can be combined, as illustrated by a comparison of consumer behavior in the skiing market before and during the recent recession in Germany.

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