Robin Neidorf Sixth Annual News Needs & Preferences Survey Tracks Change
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By Robin Neidorf


FreePint's Sixth Annual News Needs & Preferences Survey quizzes information managers as to their organisation's needs and preferences around news content. Robin Neidorf introduces the results which provide a data-driven view into the concerns of information managers as they consider significant changes in their organisational approach to news awareness. Trends include increasing importance of the ability to redistribute news content and access to news content on Bring Your Own Devices.


Beyond AggregationFor the sixth year, FreePint has conducted a survey of the organisational needs and preferences around news content, as reported by information managers.

The 2013 survey gathered responses from 296 information managers, each of whom invested 15 to 25 minutes to provide responses to our detailed questions about overall preferences, specific vendors in their portfolios, use of and policies around free web content, and anticipated changes in needs or behaviours in the coming year.

As the project has evolved over the years, we update the questions to reflect current concerns and emerging trends in the highly competitive news marketplace. At the same time, we make an effort to maintain consistency from year to year, so that we are able to compare results over time.

This year's results provide us with a data-driven view into the concerns of information managers as they consider significant changes in their organisational approach to news awareness. 

Figure 1 shows how survey respondents characterise their organisations - results that mirror very closely responses from previous years.

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Figure 1

We asked respondents their geographic location; Figure 2 shows their answers. The majority of respondents are split nearly equally between UK & Europe, and North America.

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Figure 2

We asked how much purchase authority respondents have with regard to news content. Their responses are shown in Figure 3.

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Figure 3

In the past, we've asked respondents if their decision-making around news content is centralised or localised. For 2013, we modified this question slightly, based on feedback from customers who indicated that purchasing and management of news content is no longer solely managed by an information centre or equivalent. Figure 4 shows the spread of responses to the question, "Within your organisation, where does primary responsibility lie for selecting, managing and sharing news content?"

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Figure 4

In particular, FreePint customers have highlighted the increasing importance of marketing or market research departments for their responsibility with regard to news awareness.

Key Findings in 2013 Results

Since June 2013, we have been studying a wide range of trends relating to news aggregation and news awareness in today's organisations, including increasing interest in do-it-yourself aggregation and closer attention to unique sources by geography or industry. And, as Factiva has been the market leader for the news aggregation market, the major changes Dow Jones is making to its offerings by subsuming Factiva into the new DJX portal are creating waves.

Some of these trends resonate with the key findings of the 2013 survey:

  • Ability to redistribute news content is the most important variable for respondents when they consider purchasing a news content provider, followed by advanced search capabilities and then inclusion of specific sources in the collection

  • Respondents are less likely in 2013 than they were in 2009 to report that "the features of premium services add value to news content"

  • Just under one-third of respondents are actively considering a change to their premium news service provider, but nearly 40% of those who name Factiva as their preferred provider are actively considering a change

  • Access to news content on non-work devices has increased significantly since 2011.

Articles in series:

Full report (PDF) contains all of the above content, in a convenient package for reference and sharing:

Editor's Note: Beyond Aggregation  

This article is part of the FreePint Topic Series: Beyond Aggregation, which runs from October to November 2013. Register your interest, and you'll get pre-notification of when registration opens for any webinars in this series, as well as a free copy of the FreePint Report: Buyer's Guide on News Content when we publish in November.

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