Study Shows Two-Thirds of All Teenagers Now Wired

It’s 1998, do you know where your teenage audience is? Chances are they’re surfing the Internet or sending email. That’s the finding of the Simmons TeenAge Research Study (STARS), released by Simmons, a market research firm.

According to STARS, nearly 65% of teens ages 12-19 claim to have used or subscribed to online services over the past 12 months, a 50% increase over the 43% who said they were wired two years ago.

Teens say they become aware of Web sites through word of mouth (25%), followed by TV commercials (19%) and online browsing (17%). More than half-a-million teenage boys claim they spend less time sleeping because of the Internet, and at the same time, 1.8 million say they are watching less TV.

Almost 1.5 million teenage girls view the Internet as a new way to socialize and 2.4 million girls say the Internet has increased their desire to learn.

“Teenagers are a powerful market segment and their importance to advertisers is clear,” said Geoff Wicken, president and CEO of New York City-based Simmons. “They have significant buying power, and our STARS study can help advertisers not only examine teens’ service usage and purchasing habits, but also see their likes and dislikes, attitudes and opinions with regard to the important issues of the day.”

Teens were asked for their views on lifestyle issues, brand preferences, leisure activities and media usage. The sample group consisted of teenagers ages 12 to 19 and was a recontact of those households from Simmons’ Study of Media and Markets who have teenagers. For information on ordering a copy of the study, contact Simmons Client Service at 800-999-7672.

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