Know your niches

Earlier this week, I returned to the idea of “either-and” publishing: thinking about digital as part of a range of content dissemination offerings. Some recent work by arts and crafts publisher Interweave shows how even “digital” can shift when you look at the level of a niche or audience.

In one of its recent posts, the Mequoda Group noted that Interweave has surveyed its audience to determine both adoption rates and uses for a variety of tablets. Data collected in October 2011 revealed:

  • Although overall purchase data suggests that about 11% of the U.S. market owns a tablet, 28% of Interweave’s “buying” audience has a tablet;
  • Of those who don’t yet own a tablet, between 40% and 48% intend to buy one in the next six months. Mequoda points out that these numbers predate the launch of lower-cost tablet options like the Kindle Fire and may understate future intent;
  • Interweave found that its “buying” audience favored the use of tabled for e-reading, while its magazine subscribers made “browsing the web” the primary purpose; and
  • Unlike the Texterity (mobile app) survey, the audience for Interweave skewed female and older.

We’re often knee-deep in data about trends in the sale and uses of various devices. Much of that data can be directionally beneficial, but publishers still need to evaluate its relevance in terms of the audiences served or targeted.

Smartly, Interweave plans to repeat the survey on a frequent (quarterly) basis. They are an unusual example in their commitment to the development and use of data, but they may not remain unusual for much longer.

About Brian O'Leary

Founder and principal of Magellan Media Consulting, Brian O’Leary helps enterprises with media and publishing components capitalize on the power of content. A veteran of more than 30 years in the publishing industry and a prolific content producer himself, Brian leverages the breadth and depth of his experience to deliver innovative content solutions.

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