Funny, Multi-Channel Campaigns Reach College Students

College students and recent graduates are more likely to responds they see on multiple media or humorous creative executions. That’s according to findings from the “2006 Media Perception” survey conducted by Experience.

Students are 40 percent more likely to respond to an ad with a humorous message. Fact-based messages are preferred by 28 percent of respondents, and 22 percent like to be entertained by advertising. Campaigns spanning more than one medium are 50 percent more likely to get a response from college students and recent grads.

“Our members have indicated that they are most likely to respond to an ad if they see it frequently and in more than one medium,” said Experience founder and CEO Jennifer Floren. “Because college students spend more time on the Internet than other mediums, it’s a logical place for advertisers to dedicate a greater portion of their budgets.”

This group spends more time online, but the Web doesn’t cancel out consumption of traditional media such as broadcast TV and print. Forty-three percent of college students spend 10 or more hours on the Internet each week. Seventeen percent of students spend 10 or more hours per week watching TV. Six percent listen to the radio, one percent read magazines and one percent read newspapers.

“For today’s college student multi-tasking defines how they live,” said Floren. “Generally it’s common for the average college student to listen to music, communicate with peers on the Internet and watch television simultaneously. To make an impact, advertisers need to create a ubiquitous presence across multiple mediums.”

The most widely visited sites by this group are the top-trafficked sites overall: Google, Yahoo and MySpace. Offline, the media students and recent grads spend the most time with are CNN, “The New York Times,” “The Wall Street Journal,” and advertising.

Online, the student set typically views and downloads photos (62 percent); uploads and shares photos (51 percent); reads articles (47 percent); uploads, shares and views online video (47 percent); reads blogs (34 percent); creates or listens to podcasts (25 percent); participates in online bulletin boards, groups or chat rooms (24 percent); and writes blogs (22 percent). The percentage of college-age bloggers is consistent with an earlier study released by Pew Internet last fall.

“Students are not just surfing the Web, they are interactively engaged with the Internet,” reports the study.

“Over the past five years the time students spend on the Internet has increased which can be attributed to the fact that their behaviors online continue to evolve,” said Floren. “As the Internet becomes more interactive, students no longer use it to merely surf or make an occasional purchase. Social networks have certainly contributed to this paradigm and businesses are smarter about building sites that are most experiential and interactive and therefore stickier.”

Data are from an opt-in survey with over 350 respondents. The online poll was conducted in June.

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