Planning for attention: New report reveals how brands can reach most engaged audiences

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A new report by independent media agency The Kite Factory reveals key insights into the diversification of media consumption of UK adults and how audience attention within digital platforms compares to traditional media channels.

Using learnings from behavioural economics studies, the findings reveal interesting consumer attention metrics across media channels, audience attention trends by age, as well as optimum times of the day / week to plan an advertising campaign to win attention.

Using IPA TouchPoints (a nationally representative survey and diary tool) The Kite Factory discovered that 54% of the 117 hours spent consuming media each week by UK Adults, were when they were feeling relaxed and engaged and more likely to notice advertising. The report identifies how best to reach audiences in these moments.

TV holds the highest share of consumption time as expected, yet interestingly only 58% of time watching TV is undistracted from any other activity. In contrast, broadcaster catch up services, such as All4 and Sky Go, (BVOD) can be seen as more efficient with a 9% higher amount of time spent undistracted.

TikTok, YouTube and Snapchat share the highest percentage of undivided attention. With Snapchat taking the second highest volume of overall attentive weekly hours spent. Despite the lower weekly reach of TikTok, Twitter and Instagram they have just as many attentive hours per week as spent on Facebook and OOH due to the nature of the social context in which we consume the channels

When looking at attention by age, it is harder to reach UK adults in media when their attention is undivided as they get older and busier. 18-24s spend the most attentive time with 66 hours per week spread across the largest range of media channels. Despite their higher volume of digital media consumption, TV leads with the highest time spent undistracted for this age group closely followed by Snapchat, with the 4 leading social platforms (Facebook, Twitter, Tik Tok, Instagram) sharing similar hours spent per week after that.

Snapchat decreases with age faster than any other channel – dropping by 50% from 18-24’s to 25-34’s with a continual decline. Linear TV increases with age reaching a high of 18 attentive hours per week for 65–74 year-olds.

When looking at most attentive times / days, the report found higher attentiveness at weekends and out of working hours through the week across key channels – YouTube, Instagram, Twitter, and radio. However, Snapchat and press came out higher in the week for the younger and older non-working age groups respectively.

Using the research, The Kite Factory has created a planning tool that can increase the impact of advertising by selecting audiences and channels most suited to a campaign objective and isolating when and where to reach them through the week, when they’re least distracted.

Christian Taylor, Head of Planning at The Kite Factory said:

“Planning for attention is becoming increasingly important for brands as consumers spend more time switching between channels. This approach allows us to maximise the impact of client budgets and take a more considered approach to planning for hard-to-reach audiences who live a busy lifestyle.

We have converted the data into a planning tool for everyone to access easily to consider in their channel planning.”

The Kite Factory is the free-thinking media agency for brands with big plans. We enhance reach, reputation, and revenue by giving every client the best in heart, art and science, which means going the extra mile to understand their world and collaborating to create market-leading strategies, anchored in intelligent data and insight. The Kite Factory works with a variety of commercial and not for profit organisations, including David Lloyd Leisure, WaterAid, WhiteClaw, Leigh Day, The LTA, Comic Relief, Triodos Bank, Lovehoney and Little Freddie. Find out more here.

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