The Media Consumer Ten Years from now: Creative Input for Strategies

IFRA's new Where NEWS? report describes how scenario development can be an important business tool

(PresseBox) ( Darmstadt, )
Using the technique of scenario development in the organisation allows publishers to prepare for the future and define relevant business strategies. This is the conclusion of the report "Scenarios of Media Use in Europe and North America in 2017", the eighth to be published as part of IFRA's three-year research initiative Where NEWS?, which looks at the future of media usage (www.wherenews.info). The report constitutes a milestone in media research publishing, as it not only describes a number of possible future scenarios of media usage, but also, importantly, provides publishers with a complete set of tools for running their own scenario development workshops.

"We believe scenario development is a very powerful and exciting tool for publishers to anticipate and prepare for the future," says Where NEWS? Project Manager Jochen Dieckow. "The aim is not to forecast one utterly correct picture of the future - the scenarios may or may not come true - but to create a better understanding of the driving factors, which will most probably shape the future and to trigger a discussion within management on possible consequences of "best" and "worst" cases."

The new report describes the process of scenario development as well as eight possible future scenarios, all developed by members of the Project Steering Group and representatives of the industry - publishers, suppliers and media agencies - during a two day workshop held in Berlin in late 2007. The experts were tasked with answering the question "What will media usage look like in 2017?". Based on key factors deemed to of high impact yet uncertain (identified through previous research done within the Where NEWS? project), they produced eight different possible scenarios of media consumers, behaviour and markets in ten years' time. The report also contains a methodology section, which publishers can refer to in order to run their own scenario development workshops.

Says Dieckow: "We consider scenario development to be the right approach in preparing for the future, especially in dynamic markets with disruptive developments. Media businesses operate in increasingly segmented markets and will need to simulate the different facets of media consumption and of the media consumers in various scenarios. We hope our new report will provide publishers with the inspiration and know-how to set up their own scenario development projects and develop relevant strategies for the future."

For more information, see www.wherenews.info or contact Jochen Dieckow, Where NEWS? Project Manager, at dieckow@ifra.com or +49.6151.733-736.

Directly linked to IFRA's Where NEWS? initiative is the executive forum "The Future of News Publishing: Business Models - Strategies - Tactics", 9 - 10 October, Rome (Italy). The conference programme will discuss the results from the research and will be a pool of inspiration for a top management audience eager to hear and discuss innovative approaches that display the future crowned with success:

- The strategic way into the future,
- Innovative examples of business development,
- Tactics to stay relevant to the future customer.

For more information, see www.ifra.com/businessmodels or contact Christiane Schmidt, Business Development Manager (Events), at schmidt@ifra.com or +49.6151.733-771.
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