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» Teens Know What They Want From Online News: Do You?
The NAA Foundation and the Media Management Center at Northwestern University have teamed up to explore and put to the test better ways to match the online news preferences of teens.
We developed prototypes of home pages and story-level pages, then tested them in focus groups across the United States. Teens’ responses were remarkably and overwhelmingly consistent, regardless of market size or location.
We found that there are better ways to serve teens with online news. The answer isn’t to dilute the news, but to be bolder.
This doesn’t mean that news organizations should necessarily create sites just for teens. The term “youth news Web site” conjures up visions of a site heavy with lifestyle and entertainment content, with a little news on the side. But what these teens said they want are news sites that do news well, not dumb it down or pose as experts in teen culture.
Given that teen responses were very similar to those of adults who are light readers, we recommend creating a new type of site – not just for teens, but for all people who lack experience with news and have a limited amount of time to get engaged with it.
To find out more, including “Ten Key Lessons About Serving Young Audiences,” download the executive summary and full report of our study. A PDF of the presentation at NAA's Annual Convention in April 2009 also is available (note: large file - may take awhile to download).
Other NAA Foundation and Media Management Center studies:
If It Catches My Eye: An Exploration of Online News Experiences of Teenagers – looks at what drives the online news consumption of young people.
Targeting Teens 2007 – a report from NAA reveals how the teen market thrives with diverse interests and immense buying power
Lifelong Readers: Driving Civic Engagement — shows how newspapers play a role in encouraging young people to get involved in their communities.
Youth Media DNA – examines the media habits of young people ages 15 to 29.
High School Journalism Matters — shows a positive link between scholastic journalism experience and academic achievement.
Lifelong Readers: The Role of Teen Content — reveals that future readership results when newspapers publish content for teens.
Growing Lifelong Readers — examines the impact of student involvement with newspapers on adult readership.