"Since we started the MRF and MAPS, there have been a total of six releases of data and now, with the latest release, we have 18 months of data, building trendable data and new observations in consumer behaviour," says MRF's CEO Johann Koster.

Koster adds, "With fieldwork started in July 2020, we will reach 24 months of continuous fieldwork at the end of June 2022. This amounts to 40 000 interviews and over 21 000 diaries that have been completed."

According to the survey results, for this release, the sample target of 20 000 face-to-face interviews and 10 000 leave-behinds was again surpassed by achieving 20 052 and 11 136 respectively.

MAPS is a continually evolving survey and covers:
  • consumer life stages and lifestyles
  • media consumption
  • purchasing behaviours
  • financials (banking products and consumer behaviour), and
  • product purchasing, from household groceries to pet food.
The survey segments by means of:
  • LSMs
  • SEMs
  • self-perceptions
  • demographics, and
  • income.
Interesting to note is the consumer's self-perception of parenting and health status. Thirty-four percent of those surveyed with an average income of R12 947 believe that their parenting skills are good giving themselves a score of nine or ten out of a possible 10. Conversely, households that earned less than R10 000 only rated their parenting skills and health between one and four.

The survey also measures the macro media and penetration of print, which gave the following results:
Print media
  • newspapers: 39%
  • newspaper inserts: 15%
  • magazines: 11%, and
  • store magazines: 19%.

  • radio: 71%
  • TV: 74%, and
  • cinema: 1%.
  • streaming media: 40%, and
  • social media: 53%
Out-of-Home: 58%.

During this fieldwork period, there was a decline in most media types, in all probability, due to the changing Covid-19 restrictions in South Africa.

One of the favourite questions asked is how consumers multi-screen or multi-platform, and this was answered in detail. Respondents were asked which secondary activities they engage with while using various media platforms.

While watching TV, 40% of respondents favour browsing social media and 21% listen to the radio. Interesting to observe is that radio is the most frequent secondary activity while streaming, surfing the Internet, or reading a newspaper / magazine. This suggests that radio is a high-frequency companion media and social media is omnipresent.

The data also touches base with categories such as:
  • cellphones
  • financial services, and
  • automotive.
The Cellphone category for example includes:
  • purchasing behaviours
  • top cellphone brands (Samsung 29% with the second brand Nokia coming in at 17%)
  • top networks (Vodacom 39%)
  • average monthly spend
  • household entertainment, and
  • top Internet Service Provider.
Taking segmentation even further, the Media Stretch analysis was demonstrated by Sifiso Falala from Plus94 Research. Cluster analysis makes it easy for marketers to target customers, instead of having one general marketing approach. To help analyse media data, clusters based on the intensity of media usage were created.

Falala says that consumers face a bewildering choice of media platforms and the media and advertising industry also want to know what platforms, and how many other different platforms, are being used by whom.

Four stretch levels that include social media are:
  • cinema
  • magazines
  • store magazines
  • newspapers
  • streaming
  • radio
  • television
  • Internet, and
  • Out-of-Home mediums. 
These mediums were identified as:
  • Low Stretch (zero to two mediums) at 29%,
  • Lower Medium Stretch (three to four mediums) at 26%,
  • Upper Medium Stretch (five to seven mediums) at 38% and
  • High Stetch (eight to 10 mediums) at 7%.
According to Koster, the Media Stretch analysis is still in the testing phase and will be trialled by a small user group over the next month or so before being released to MAPS subscribers.

The full presentation and recording can be downloaded or viewed here.

The next MAPS releases are scheduled for August 2022 and November 2022, covering the respective fieldwork periods of April 2021 to March 2022 and July 2021 to June 2022.

"Thank you to everyone at the MRF and Plus94 Research that have put in a herculean effort to make this data available," says Koster.

Koster concludes, "Thank you too to our subscribers that have made this all possible and the industry who took the time in their busy schedules to attend the webinar. We look forward to the next release in August."

For more information, visit www.mrfsa.org.za.