Digital vs. Physical Newspapers: A Behavioral Study of the Underlying Drivers Behind Respectively Digital and Physical Newspapers from a Consumer Perspective

Jennie Dige Streit

Student thesis: Master thesis


This thesis is a behavioral study of the underlying drivers behind loyalty of respectively a digitaland a physical newspaper, seen from a consumer perspective. Through qualitative studiesidentifies a range of underlying drivers, followed by quantitative studies tested for how theconsumers weight the drivers.Payment newspaper is facing a major challenge. For many years there has been a decline in thephysical newspaper sales and a very limited gain in the digital newspaper sales. Therefore, it isappropriate for the media houses to find a strategy that will help them through their challenges. Inthe recent years, there has been an increased focus on customers and customer needs, sincestudies show that it is more profitable to retain existing customers than to acquire new. Therefore,it is appropriate for the media houses to observe what makes their customers satisfied and loyal.The study presents a structural model for respectively the physical and the digital newspaperreaders, based on the customer satisfaction model EPSI. The underling drivers which helpsunderstanding the loyalty, is found through a behavior study with the model “Theory of PlannedBehavior”. The study is based on 12 personal interviews.The behavioral study shows that the physical and digital newspaper readers, cannot be segmentedby their lifestyle. However, it shows that the physical readers are represented best by beingphysical readers, but the digital readers are not showing any pattern, why further studies must beconsidered.The quantitative study, which is based on 196 observations, shows that the customer loyalty forboth user types are driven by 4 drivers, but with different weighting and underlying drivers.The result shows that for the physical readers, the driver “product-quality” is weighted the mostand is the one with the best explained underlying drivers “quality”, “width of news” and “depth onnews”. The lowest weighted driver is “Image”. For the digital readers the driver “service” has thehighest affect on loyalty, with the underlying driver “environment” as the highest weighted. Thelowest weighted driver is “expectations”.Through a priority map the study can help the media houses to allocate their resources optimallyseen from the customers’ needs and interest.

EducationsMSc in Economics and Marketing, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2016
Number of pages85