Smart 3 | 10/21/18

Welcome back and happy Sunday. We’re 16 days away from the midterm elections. Each week we take a look at the “Smart 3” trends driving and shaping the media landscape.


1. We’re choosing the news we want to read.

Sara Fischer dives into publisher trends for Axios and finds the smart phone media market drastically shifting. Referral sources are dipping as more consumers search their own news.

Since 2017 …. Google Search on mobile has grown more than 2x, helping guide users to stories on publishers’ owned and operated channels.

The takeaway: We now choose our own news. And the future looks even more complicated, as more companies and organizations become their own publishers.


2. The vast majority of Americans rarely read POTUS Tweets.

However, that doesn’t stop @RealDonaldTrump from driving media cycles 24/7.

From the Public Affairs Council: 2018 Pulse Survey:

  • “Nearly 60% of Americans rarely or never read President Trump’s tweets, either via Twitter or the news media, and only 15% read his tweets “very often.” Among people who approve of the president’s performance, just 15% are regular readers.”
  • “So why do Trump’s social media rants draw so much attention? It’s partially because the news media magnify his comments when he says something controversial.”

The takeaway: The Twitter feed serves as the modern-day newswire for journalists. Even if the vast majority of your intended audience doesn’t follow it, you can’t ignore Twitter. Engage on the platform (because your opponents are).

3. Where have you gone, Joe DiMaggio?

Gen Z (ages 13-22) will have different heroes than we’re used to. And they’re redefining who is influential in today’s market.

From The Center for Generational Kinetics:

  • “Rather than hanging posters of TV celebrities or athletes on their bedroom wall, Gen Z is following influencers on social media, and marketers need to urgently shift their efforts accordingly. In fact, the research found that 46% of Gen Z currently follows more than 10 online influencers (and 10% of Gen Z follow 50 or more!). It’s the online words—or video posts—of these digital influencers that matter most to this mobile-only generation.”
  • “According to the study, Gen Z expects to interact with brands on social media and is doing so in greater numbers than Millennials.”
The takeaway: Gen Z wants to hear from their peers and they’re going to social media conversations first to form their own opinions. As the media marketplace continues to evolve, a strong social outreach program will be necessary to reach younger generations.


Political debates and campaign rallies dominate the calendar.

Sunday (October 21): Minnesota Senate, Attorney General, and Governor’s debates; Pennsylvania Senate debate; Massachusetts Senate debate; California 39th Congressional District debate; Florida Governor’s debate

Monday (October 22): President Trump holds a campaign rally in Houston, TX; Former President Obama holds a campaign rally in Las Vegas, NV; Former Vice President Joe Biden attends a campaign rally with Florida Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson and gubernatorial candidate Andrew Gillum in Jacksonville, FL; Donald Trump Jr. holds a campaign rally for West Virginia Attorney General and Republican Senate candidate Patrick Morrissey in Inwood, WV; Virginia 1st Congressional District debate; New York 19th Congressional District debate; CITIZEN by CNN forum, with speakers including Jared Kushner, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), Sen. Jeff Flake (R-AZ), and Michael Bloomberg

Tuesday (October 23): Former Vice President Joe Biden attends a campaign rally with Sen. Bill Nelson and Andrew Gillum in Tampa, FL; Maryland 6th Congressional District debate; Illinois 12th Congressional District debate; New York 19th Congressional District debate; Wisconsin 1st Congressional District candidate forum; Georgia Governor’s debate; Colorado Governor’s debateWashington Post Transformers Space event, with speakers including Vice President Mike Pence, NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine and Rep. Don Beyer (D-VA); Heritage Foundation event on free trade and the U.S. auto industry featuring keynote remarks by Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH)

Wednesday (October 24): President Trump holds a campaign rally in Mosinee, WI; New Jersey Senate debate; Michigan Governor’s debate; Florida Governor’s debate; Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on nominations

Thursday (October 25): Missouri Senate debate; Wyoming Senate debate; South Carolina Governor’s debate

Friday (October 26): President Trump holds a campaign rally in Charlotte, NC; North Dakota Senate debate; Ohio Senate debate; Pennsylvania Senate debate

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