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Panpa Bulletin : April 2007
14 PANPA Bulletin April 2007 cover story Newspaper readership has a new beating heart governed by a New Economic Order (NEO), according to consumer behaviour expert Ross Honeywill. Speaking at last month's PANPA Advertising Forum, Honeywill, said newspa- per publishers need to understand Australia's four million NEOs as they are "redefining the commercial future of newspapers". "NEOs are a growing class of high-value consumers who read more, know more, spend more and demand more," he said. "NEO's spending propensity and spend- ing capacity and spending behaviour define them as high-value readers. "They are more valuable than ABs. They dominate the convergence between newspa- pers and online publishing and are influenced by advertising and editorial that reflects their passion for the "path less travelled." "NEOs are the premium readers for news- papers targeting premium advertisers." Honeywill's comments are based on the findings of 500,000 interviews over five years, which identified the NEO as the most valuable consumer in the US, the UK and Australia. Following are some of the key insights into NEO's behaviours, lifestyles and atti- tudes of particular relevance to the newspa- per industry: NEO snapshot • NEOs are high-discretionary choice con- sumers rather than basic needs consum- ers and account for more than half the discretionary spending in the Australian economy. • They have a higher spending propensity than anyone else and as a consequence, consume constantly. • A significant per centage of NEOs read more newspapers than the general popu- lation. • NEOs account for only one quarter of the population but represent more than half the high-yield spending in the economy. • NEOs are heavy newspaper and magazine readers ... They are attracted to specialist magazines that focus on desire, imagina- tion, design, whispered secrets, future directions and that "take a position" (For example, Australian Gourmet Traveller, Belle, Wallpaper, AFR Magazine, Boss and the(sydney)magazine). • NEOs dominate the convergence between newspapers and online publishing • NEOs love provenance --- the story behind the person behind the product. • They have a high appetite for all kinds of rich information and rich content --- they read more, know more, expect more and will pay more. • Ninety-eight per cent of NEOs regularly use, and are comfortable with, the inter- net --- indeed they are happy to adopt new technology but only when it delivers a service that matches their expectations and aspirations. NEOs and newspaper readership • NEOs account for 64 per cent of The Australian Financial Review's weekday readers. • Half of the The Australian's weekday read- ers are NEOs • NEOs in NSW account for 44 per cent of the total weekday readership of The Syd- ney Morning Herald and are 80 per cent more likely than the general population to read The SMH during the week. • Similarly, NEOs living in Victoria account for 44 per cent of the total weekday read- ership of The Age and are 82 per cent more likely than the general population to read it during the week. • Forty-five per cent of Victorians who read The Sunday Age are NEOs and are 86 per cent more likely than the general popula- tion to read it. • Thirty-four per cent of NSW readers of The Sun Herald are NEOs and are 38 per cent more likely than the general population to read it. • Fifty-six per cent of the readers of the AFR Magazine (monthly) are NEOs. NEOs are six-and-a-half times more likely than "Traditionals" to read the magazine. • Forty-five per cent of readers of The SMH's the(sydney)magazine are NEOs, who are around four times more likely to read the magazine than "Traditionals". • NEOs are three-and-a-half times more likely than "Traditionals" to read either The Weekend Australian Magazine or The SMH's Good Weekend. Note: All of the statistics relating to newspa- per readership are from the Roy Morgan Single Source: April 2003 -- March 2004. © NEO Group & Roy Morgan Research 2006. Understanding NEOs -- the key to newspaper survival Consumer behaviourist Ross Honeywill argues that newspaper publishers need to understand, and meet the demands, of Australia's most desirable consumer, the NEO, in order to survive. Ross Honeywill