Boomers Network Online and Stream Video, Ripe for Web Entertainment

September 24, 2008

This article is included in these additional categories:

Email | Media & Entertainment

A majority (61%) of Baby Boomer internet users in the US have visited sites that offer streaming or downloadable video, while 41% have visited online social networks, according to a report from The NPD Group.

Those figures show significant usage of online entertainment media among Boomers and make them a key demographic segment for more digital products and marketing, NPD said.

The “Entertainment Trends in America” tracking study also finds as follows:

  • More than half of all web users (57%) visited a social-networking site, such as LinkedIn, Facebook, or MySpace, in past three months:


  • Although young web users (age 13-34) are significantly more likely to visit social-networking sites – and to visit them more often – more than half of Baby Boomers (age 44-61) visited a social-networking site in the past?three months, with users averaging 15 days in one-month period.
  • Boomers who visited social-networking sites did so an average of?eight times over the previous three months.
  • 72% of all web users visited a video streaming/sharing site – such as YouTube or a TV network website – in the previous?three months. These types of sites were visited more than gaming sites, on average:


  • Among video streaming/sharing site visitors, the average usage frequency is eight days in a month.
  • Males and those age 13-34 show significantly higher penetration than females and individuals age 35 and older.

Regarding the web’s effect on traditional entertainment content, NPD found that Boomers who engage in activities such as networking or video streaming are also more likely to buy DVDs and?CDs and go out to the movies. On average, Boomers who stream video are 15% more likely than their non-streaming counterparts to buy a CD, DVD, or movie tickets, NPD said.

“As more consumers of all ages spend more time online, there’s potentially going to be less time for them to consume entertainment content in traditional ways,” said Russ Crupnick, entertainment industry analyst for The NPD Group. “These findings underscore the growing need for entertainment companies to promote and distribute digital entertainment content online, in order to keep pace with the changing needs and desires of consumers of all ages. ”

The use of email and web surfing was nearly universal among web users surveyed by NPD (97%). Online shopping was also prevalent across age groups; with 80% of web users reporting shopping in the prior three months. Teens and young adults reported less online shopping activity than older consumers, perhaps because many teens do not have access to credit cards, NPD said.

About the survey: Data is based on a sample of more than 11,000 consumers. Results were balanced to reflect the internet-connected US population age 13 and older.


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