March 29, 2011
Nomura Research Institute, Ltd.
From March 19-20, 2011, one week after the occurrence of the Tohoku Pacific Earthquake, Nomura Research Institute, Ltd. carried out a survey on "Trends in People's Use and Views of Media in the Wake of the Earthquake".
The objective of this survey was to investigate which kinds of information sources people deemed important, and to determine whether confidence levels in various media, such as the Internet, changed, as people tried to gather information related to the disaster.
For the survey method, we used Insight Signal, NRI's marketing research service utilizing the Internet. Insight Signal keeps track of each day's record of TV viewership and website access. It can carry out evaluation of each medium based on the actual conditions of media contact. The survey was given to 3,224 Internet users between the ages of 20 and 59 residing in the Kanto region (including Tokyo and six other prefectures). The main results obtained from this survey are as stated below.
"Television" ranks especially high as an information source that is considered important in the provision of earthquake-related information. "Internet Portal sites" are next in importance, and "Social media" also ranks alongside newspaper sites.
When asked which information sources are considered important in obtaining information regarding the Tohoku - Pacific Ocean Earthquake, the largest number of respondants (80.5%) emphasized "NHK television", followed by 56.9% who focused on "commercial television stations" (Figure 1). While survey subjects were Internet users, here the importance of television broadcasts during a disaster was reconfirmed.
Among obtainable information from the Internet, the highest percentage (43.2%), and third-highest percentage in the survey, placed importance on "portal sites" such as Yahoo! and Google. (This category excludes internet portal sites provided by newspaper company or television station.) Information from "social media" such as Twitter, mixi, Facebook, and other social media (7th at 18.3%) was even with information from "newspaper on Internet" (6th at 18.6%). ,This result indicates social media is playing a certain role in the acquisition of earthquake-related information.
While confidence in NHK's information rose after the earthquake, confidence in the national and local governments fell. Both increasing and decreasing trends in confidence in social media exist.
For questions about changes in confidence in various media and information providers on the topic of information regarding the Tohoku - Pacific Ocean Earthquake. "NHK" had the most responses of "Increase in confidence" with 28.8% of people responding that the "level of confidence increased." (Figure 2-1) Second highest was information from "portal sites" at 17.5%, followed by information from "individuals on social media" at 13.4%.
On the other hand, 28.9% of respondents felt "Decrease in confidence" regarding iInformation from "national and local governments." (Figure 2-2) Information from "individuals on social media" was third in number of "Increase in confidence" responses, but was also third in "Decrease in confidence" responses, at 9.0%. The reason for this is thought to be that while many respondents realized the convenience of social media in gathering earthquake-related information, there was also a possibility that as a result they had more chances of coming into contact with baseless rumors and false information.
We offer our heartfelt condolences to everyone affected by the Tohoku Pacific Earthquake. Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims, their families and who have suffered this tragic disaster.
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Insight Signal provides "single source data," which is data taken from the same subject from corporate advertisements, sales promotion and other "marketing activities," as well as the "consumption behavior process," which includes the steps the consumer takes the lead in purchase.
Specifically, for the same consumer, Insight Signal keeps track of "stimulation-type data," which includes television viewing history, web browsing history, magazine and newspaper reading history, as well as "purchase-type data," which includes perceptions, purchasing intent, purchasing experience, and the repeat-purchase situation. Clarifying advertising and sales promotion effectiveness centered on the consumer makes scientific marketing strategies possible.
Figure 1: Media/Information Sources Considered Important for Providing Information Regarding the Earthquake (Multiple responses allowed)
Figure 2-1 Proportion of answers of "Increase in confidence" upon coming into contact with the information (listed separately by media/information provider).
Figure 2-2: Proportion of answers of "Decrease in confidence" upon coming into contact with the information (listed separately by media/information provider).