by RM Fiedler

“Oh, Internet, oh, Internet, entertain me!” is the new consumer mantra. When it comes to music, movies, video games, and even entertainment news or humorous home video clips, we are going online to meet our entertainment needs. According to MediaMind and comScore, online websites that fall under “entertainment categories reach nearly 215 million people in the U.S. monthly and are some of the fastest growing.”

From streaming it to downloading it to renting it to outright buying it, we are finding our entertainment online. A 2010 study by Erin Hunter, Executive Vice-President of comScore and Dean Donaldson, Director of Digital Experience of MediaMind titled “Dwelling on Media” reports that “consumers on average visit entertainment-related sites 22 times each month, spending an average of 227 minutes visiting millions of pages of entertainment-related content.” They add that web users spend 12% of their total time online “engaging with entertainment-related content.”

And ‘engaging in content’ are the key words for entertainment websites reaching an incredible 99.6% of US Internet users. The entertainment content includes highly effective banner ads that include video graphics. As MediaMind and comScore report, video ads are the most effective in engaging users, and the engagement can range from simple brand recognition to a purchase, rental, or subscription membership.

The NPD Group estimates that in addition to consumers spending $10.5 billion purchasing physical video games, consumers spent another $4.5-4.75 billion renting, downloading, subscribing, and playing mobile-app video games in 2009. “Our expanded estimate of consumer spending reflects the growing number of options to purchase, acquire and interact with video games ranging from GameFly rentals to iPod Touch game apps,” said Anita Frazier, industry analyst, The NPD Group. “Consumer spending on social-network games like those offered by Facebook would push this estimate even higher.”

Looking for movies, the hot sites are CinemaNow, Netflix, and Hulu. For music, it’s iTunes, Napster, and Amazon MP3, streaming radio stations, or YouTube for music videos.  Besides instant access to movies, music, and video games, the entertainment trend has marked consumers’ expectations for videos on news websites. The “comScore Media Metrix Ranks 50 Top US Web Properties for May 2010” reports 100 million visitors to Entertainment News websites in May 2010 for a 20% gain over April 2010. The top spot was Yahoo’s omg! with 23 million visitors, usurping TMZ’s tabloid success, which came in second place with 16 million in one month.

Lastly, Zandl Group describes one of the latest video trends:  YouTube is becoming an increasingly-favored search engine over Google for “'how-to' and demo videos, news and current events, video content about celebrities, athletes, politicians.”  In essence, Internet use is coming down to ‘have video, we’ll watch.’

Works Cited

Hunter, Erin and Dean Donaldson. “Dwelling on Media.” MediaMind and comScore

comScore Media Metrix Ranks Top 50 US Web Properties for May 2010.” comScore. 15 June 2010.

Research Shows that Additional $4.5-$4.75 Spent on Video Game Content in 2009.” The NPD Group. 16 June 2010.

Zandl Group. “Top 7 Online Trends Moving into 2010.” Zandland Blog. 17 Nov. 2009.

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