Pacific Media Watch

20 November 2014

NZ: Mainstream media challenged in catering for ethnic communities

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Auckland City’s largest ethnic groups "well served by media in their own languages". Image: Niche Media
AUCKLAND (Unitec/Niche Media/Pacific Media Watch): Auckland’s mainstream media face a challenge meeting the needs of the city’s growing ethnic population.

Findings by Niche Media show that a significant proportion of ethnic groups prefers advertising in their own language and consume at least half their media in the same way.

The city’s largest ethnic groups are well served by media in their own languages.

The findings were presented to a one-day symposium on Ethnic Media held at Unitec last week.

Guest speakers at the symposium included representatives from industry, academia and the government.

Niche Media research shows that population growth will be in Pacific and Asian communities.

There are huge opportunities for marketers and the media as migrants arrive who are unfamiliar with local brands.

Tapping the market
However, questions remain about whether the mainstream media knows how to tap into this market, with research showing that significant numbers of people prefer to receive advertising in their own language.

A growing percentage of the Asian market already lives in the city’s most affluent suburbs with the best schools.

There is a wide range of media aimed at the Chinese market, with three radio stations broadcasting in Mandarin and Cantonese, 11 television stations and many print publications.

More than three quarters of the people surveyed by Niche Media said they preferred advertising in Chinese. They also said they consumed more than half their media in Chinese.

Figures for the Korean community are even higher, with 81 percent of those surveyed saying they prefer Korean advertising and about the same number saying they consume more than half their media in Korean.

There are several Korean publications in Auckland, only two television channels and no dedicated Korean radio station. However, the Korean programming on Planet FM is ranked highly,.

The city’s Indian population is catered for with three main radio stations, several publications and more than two dozen television channels.

Criticism of 'assumptions'
However, there was criticism from the floor that Niche Media’s survey assumed that the Indian population was mostly Hindi speaking and ignored other Indian languages such as Tamil and Malayalee.

The Niche Media survey also looked at the Pacific Island population – defined largely as Tongans and Samoans – and found that about a third of the population preferred its advertising in their own  language.

Nearly 60 percent of those surveyed said that at least half their media consumption was in their own language.

The Pacific community is served by several radio stations and print publications, although there is no television channel catering for the Pacific community.

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Pacific Media Watch

PMC's media monitoring service

Pacific Media Watch is compiled for the Pacific Media Centre as a regional media freedom and educational resource by a network of journalists, students, stringers and commentators. (cc) Creative Commons