New White Paper from Online Publishers Association Identifies, Examines and Characterizes Internet Dayparts
Study Finds that Audience Share and Demographics of Internet Content Sites Vary by Time of Day; Internet Utilities Such as Search and E-mail Do Not
NEW YORK, NY -- February 6, 2003 -- The Online Publishers Association today released a new white paper entitled The Existence and Characteristics of Dayparts on the Internet.
The report is the third in a series of OPA White Papers intended to provide marketers with a better understanding of Internet usage and the role of various metrics in evaluating a site's advertising potential.
Using data from Nielsen//NetRatings, the paper concludes that five distinct dayparts exist on the Internet: Early Morning (M-F, 6am-8am), Daytime (M-F, 8am-5pm), Evening (M-F, 5pm-11pm), Late Night (M-F, 11pm-6am), and Weekends (Sat-Sun, all day). The study confirmed that Daytime is the largest daypart (measured in terms of both total audience and total usage minutes), followed by Evenings and Weekends.
"Daypart targeting on the Internet has been proliferating, but until now, there has been no analysis of where the natural breaks in the dayparts occur," said Michael Zimbalist, executive director of the Online Publishers Association. "This study represents the first such analysis."
Research shows that affluent, working people between the ages of 25-54 make up a larger share of the Daytime audience than any other daypart, while children under the age of 18 are three times more likely to be reached during the Evening and Weekend dayparts.
"Media planners can improve the efficiency of their ad buys by weighting them toward those dayparts during which their target audiences predominate," said Mr. Zimbalist.
In addition, an examination of usage by site category found that Internet users seek out different types of sites depending on the daypart. Notably, Internet utilities, such as search engines/portals, e-mail and chat showed little variation in usage or audience demographics by daypart, whereas content sites exhibited distinct differences in usage and demographics by time of day.
"This finding -- that the Internet Utilities display little variation in relative usage levels or demographics by daypart -- in marked contrast to Content sites, helps to further elucidate that the consumption of online content by consumers is a unique activity separate and distinct from use of the medium for communication and search," said Mr. Zimbalist. "The level of engagement and affinity that consumers have for content sites provides marketers with unique opportunities to communicate with their prospects and customers."
Usage at Entertainment sites was significantly less during dayparts dominated by Work usage (11%), compared to those dominated by Home usage (15-19%). Usage of News & Information sites showed the opposite pattern, peaking during the Early Morning and Daytime, when a majority of usage is from work.
Further analysis shows that certain demographics are easier to reach on particular types of sites during specific dayparts. For example, during Early Morning, 51% of usage of News & Information sites is from Males 25-54, though the demographic represents only 41% of total usage for the daypart.
"Understanding Internet dayparts completes one more piece of the puzzle, as marketers increasingly demand apples-to-apples comparisons between offline and online media," said Charles Buchwalter, vice president of client analytics, Nielsen//NetRatings. "This information will help planners more effectively carve out media buys to match a desired audience when and where they are online."
The study was based on U.S. Internet usage in September 2002 from Nielsen//NetRatings. Hourly usage data for all 30 days in September was segmented by gender/age, household income and usage location (home versus work), as well as by site category.
The Existence and Characteristics of Dayparts on the Internet is available, free-of-charge, on the OPA Web site at www.online-publishers.org.
Nielsen//NetRatings is the global standard for digital media measurement and analysis and is the industry's premier source for online advertising intelligence with its NetView, AdRelevance, @Plan and WebRF services. Covering 70 percent of the world's Internet usage, the Nielsen//NetRatings services offer syndicated Internet and digital media ratings reports and custom-tailored data to help companies gain valuable insight into their business. For more information, please visit www.nielsen-netratings.com.
About the Online Publishers Association
Founded in June 2001, the Online Publishers Association (OPA) is an industry trade organization whose mission is to advance the interests of high-quality online publishers before the advertising community, the press, the government and the public. Members of OPA represent the standards in Internet publishing with respect to editorial quality and integrity, credibility and accountability. OPA member sites have a combined, unduplicated reach of more than 66 million unique visitors, reaching over 50 percent of the total U.S. Internet audience. (Source: Nielsen//NetRatings, December 2002 combined home and work data). For more information about the Online Publishers Association, visit www.online-publishers.org.
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