From multiple sources, including Brand Atlas, we see that claimed consumption of traditional media (printed magazines, printed newspapers, broadcast television and to a lesser extent radio) is in a never-ending and strongly significant decline. It’s no secret that the traditional media’s woes are far from over.

For media consumers, it’s a case of:
“Why wait for the traditional media to report on the things I want to know about, when I can easily go onto the internet to get the stuff I want, right now and for free?”

“And why hope that the traditional media will spin stories in ways which fit with my own personal points of view? If I go onto the internet, it doesn’t take too long before I can find the stories I’m interested in, told in ways that match my own views.  Also, I get to see a broad spectrum of alternative opinions which I can use to entrench, refine, improve or even change my own personal views.”

“Why should I believe that the traditional media are the only ones with the right opinions about everything? I never was one of the herd – I’m joining the media revolution!”

It’s pretty clear that the internet is the source of the stories and opinions that people want and that it is steadily throttling the traditional media. This is true for most media consumers but especially true for the younger generations – Millennials and Gen Z. It’s unlikely that they will ever start buying and reading printed magazines and newspapers just like they won’t start renting DVD’s from video stores. It’s also unlikely that they will prefer curated broadcast media to the plethora of content on demand that they can be stream on the internet, anytime, anywhere.

So what are the traditional media companies doing to counter the internet attack? Not much, it seems. The best and probably the only winning strategy is for them to build their brands in people’s minds to make them more trustworthy and credible than they are right now, and at the same time, line extend their reinvigorated brands into other product categories. A few are doing this already, but in the main, most are not.

The problem is that traditional media companies are publishers, not brand builders. They know how to write stories, but they don’t know how to build brands. Brand building and line extensions cost money, and most of them are cash-strapped because of the erosion of their readership, so they can’t afford either.

Instead of building their brands to counter the internet invasion, they have resorted to climbing onto the ‘fake news’ bandwagon – if you didn’t hear it from us, it simply is not true.

Making war on your competitor is not nearly as effective as making love to your customer. Knocking the competition is never a winning strategy unless you are able to offer a superior product or service at the same time.

Don’t hold your breath waiting for the traditional media to strategize their way out of the mess they’re in right now.

To find out more about All Told and what we do visit our website (www.alltold.co.za) or call Megan on 072 060 5241.