Local News Survey: Very Few Follow Independent News Sources Online

Like many industries, local news has been drastically impacted by new technology. Small, independent news outlets have had to change the way they deliver updates to keep up with consumers. And now, sites like AOL’s Patch.com have begun offering micro-news sites for specific cities and towns around the country. How do Americans feel about the new direction of local news? And do people prefer getting their news from a network of sites or a small, independent local news outlet?

local news

Local News

In Ask Your Target Market’s latest survey, 48% of US consumers said they often pay attention to local news. Another 36% said they sometimes keep up with news in their community. 13% said they rarely keep up with local news coverage. And just 3% said they never pay attention to local news.

But local news can mean different things to different people. Of those who said they keep up with local news coverage, 65% said they follow news revolving around their state as a whole. 56% said they follow news coverage about their large metropolitan area. And 54% said they follow news revolving around their single city or town.

News Outlets

And as with other types of news, local news coverage can be delivered in a variety of different formats. 80% said they watch local news coverage on TV. 52% keep up with local news coverage online. 38% read local news in a newspaper or other print format. 27% listen to coverage on the radio. 11% receive local updates on their phone or mobile device. And 4% keep up with local news in other ways.

News Networks

Many Americans keep up with local news online, but that could mean they keep up with small, local news outlets with an online presence, or it could mean they keep up with news outlets that are part of a larger, well-known network. Only 11% of consumers who pay attention to local news said they get their news from a small, independent news outlet. 34% get news updates from a more established news network. And 46% get news from both. Of those who said they keep up with news updates online, just 8% said they get news from small publications.

However, 22% of respondents said they would be more likely to trust news coverage from a small, independent outlet. And just 20% said they would rather get their news from a larger, established source. 58% said it makes no difference.

You can view the complete survey results in the widget below and be sure to click “Open Full Report” to take advantage of all the chart and filter options.

Photo Credit: If you wanted proof here it is from Flickr

What do you want to know? If you need some consumer insights on a particular topic, let us know in the comments below and we’ll consider it for an upcoming survey post.

Results were collected on August 27 via AYTM’s online survey panel.

Anne Pilon brings 3 years experience to AYTM as a blogger and journalist. She has a degree in journalism and marketing communications from Columbia College in Chicago and enjoys writing about business, marketing, social media, and art.