NPR has just released a fascinating set of stats about its Twitter followers, including information about how much they click through, how they get their news, how they interact with content and even how old they are.
In a survey of more than 10,000 respondents, NPR found that its Twitter (Twitter) followers are younger, more connected to the social web, and more likely to access content through digital platforms such as NPR’s website, podcasts, mobile apps and more.
NPR has more than one Twitter account; its survey found that most respondents followed between two and five NPR accounts, including topical account, show-specific accounts and on-air staff accounts.
The data on age is hardly surprising. The median age of an NPR Twitter follower is 35 — around 15 years younger than the average NPR radio listener. This lines up with data we recently found about other traditional news media; the average Facebook (Facebook) user reading and “liking” content on a news website is two decades younger than the average print newspaper subscriber.
Not to put too fine a point on it, the future of news media lies in successful integration of social media to get the attention (and click-throughs) of a younger generation — a generation whose news needs are vastly different than those of the generations that preceded it.
Of NPR’s Twitter followers, the majority (67%) still do listen to NPR on the radio. But the other ways they access NPR’s content are indicative of a growing trend:
Of survey respondents, 59% said they use NPR.org, 39% listen to NPR’s podcasts, around half use an NPR mobile app and 28% say they access NPR via Facebook. All told, 77% of NPR’s Twitter followers said they get all or most of their news online.
And Twitter followers are more likely to expect breaking news, too, likely because of the real-time nature of the medium.
What do you think of NPR’s stats? Do you use Twitter to follow and access news? What about mobile apps or podcasts — do you find those media useful when produced by a mainstream news organization? Let us know what you think in the comments.