Part 2: Why Online? - The Changing Media Landscape

At baitbox, we are slowly going to be introducing certain topical discussion points over the next few weeks to get our readers up to speed with the current market environment in terms of internet technologies and where they are headed from a sourcing and recruitment perspective.

Some of you may already be familiar with the concepts which we are to be discussing, but its very important that for future purposes, all readers are on the same page with regards to understanding the marketplace.

We will be focusing in the next while, on a series of blog posts outlining the basics, and the importance of using online as a part of sourcing and hiring strategies moving forward.

Today, I would like to focus on the media landscape, and how it has changed with the advent of internet technologies.
“The traditional media trinity, consisting of television, newspapers/magazines and radio, has dominated the media landscape and, subsequently, media budgets since the 1950s. However, the emergence of Generation X and Generation Y as well as the evolution of new media forms there has been a major shift in the media landscape which exists today. [Source]

If one looks at the most well known offline/traditional media and online/new media tools today, you would be looking at:

Offline: magazines, newspapers, television, radio, direct mail, outdoor advertising

Online: websites, online advertising, banner ads, content sponsorships/links, search engine optimization, pay-per inclusion, pay-per-click, permission-based e-mail, online coupons and promotions, blogs, podcasts, webinars, rich media like streaming video, etc.

There is no denying that the digital age is taking over almost every facet of modern day media consumption. More and more of all our lives are spent online - as the facts show on yesterdays post the % of connected South Africans is growing steadily year on year, and with the introduction of new infrastructure in years to come there is no doubt that we should anticipate a massive growth in numbers connected in the near future.

As the online population grows, it is inevitable that media consumption online will increase - the great debate currently seems to be whether online will completely replace offline in times to come. Now I don’t want to open a can of worms here, but my view is that in the foreseeable future there is still room for offline/traditional media, but there is no doubt that their revenue growth will be eroded. Richard Mullins, director at Acceleration writes “The revenues of offline publishers, particularly print publishers, have been dramatically eroded over the past ten years as their readers and advertisers have flocked to the Internet.” SOURCE

If the US markets are anything to go by, the graph below is proof in the pudding:

At the end of the day, we really want to focus on the importance of using online mediums if you wish to engage with potential job seekers more effectively.

With the baby boomer generation starting to retire, recruitment has shifted to that of generation X (30-39 year olds) as well as generation Y/Millennials (18-29 year olds). These generations consume media very differently to previous generations ultimately resulting in HR having to adopt new approaches and thought processes to source staff of the future.

As the South African market stands, the offline medium must not be completely written off. There is still a large amount of traditional media consumed due to factors like we spoke about yesterday - factors including legislation, high pricing structures and education amongst others.

Over coming years, media budgets will sway more and more in the direction of online as it has started to do in first world markets - and South Africa is sure to follow suite but for now its important to consider both offline and online as important parts of your recruitment marketing mix to reach your target markets.

In coming weeks we will slowly take you through various relevant trends, buzzwords and technologies that are important to understand in this ever changing environment.

If you would like to subscribe to this series, and the blog posts as they are launched, make sure you go to

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