Who is using hyperlocal media?
Today we are pleased to publish some research into what we think is a critical area for hyperlocal – the demand for and use of hyperlocal media services in the UK.
Alongside our research summary, we have also published a longer report: UK demand for hyperlocal media, written by Kantar Media, which contains more detail on the results of the nationally-representative UK-wide survey which we commissioned from them.
While our findings don't contradict many of the team's previous thoughts on hyperlocal media, we believe this work is valuable in that now we have more solid evidence on which to think about how hyperlocal media is being used, and what the implications of this are for practitioners, investors in the sector and policymakers.
We would encourage you to read the research summary. Click the link on the right to download it.
Overall our research shows that hyperlocal media users are generally interested in consuming functional information including local weather and local breaking news, and do so from a range of sources. The most commonly used of these are search engines, the app or website of local authorities and the app or website of local newspapers or magazines. We also find that the take-up of connected devices such as tablets and smartphones has been a driver behind the increased use of hyperlocal media.
Significant audience reach is important, but we also acknowledge that a hyperlocal media service does not necessarily need large numbers of users for it to generate public value and that if we were to ask the same questions within certain areas of the UK we might see different results: for example, significant numbers saying they use local blogs and other hyperlocal services which are independent of traditional local media sources. However, the focus of the work we are publishing today is on understanding the picture at a UK-wide level.
We intend to publish further research in the coming months as we continue our programme of work and experimentation in the hyperlocal sector.
For our research briefing and report please see here.