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Canada News Media Market Report

Everything you need to make the right decisions

Providing the most comprehensive and up-to-date information and analysis of the News Media market, and the behaviours, preferences and habits of the consumer.

Mintel has the answers you’re looking for

What are the key challenges facing the industry? Who is the consumer and what do they want? Where are the opportunities, where are the risks and what lies ahead?

Covered in this report

This report covers news media:

  • News media: mass media outlets that focus on delivering information about current events to the public

Given that news stories can often have an impact on the lives of consumers, it is no surprise that almost everyone consumes news media in some form. Overall, 96% of consumers have gotten their news from at least one source in the past three months – and a quarter have actually used five or more types of sources in that time.

Expert analysis from a specialist in the field

Written by Scott Stewart, a leading analyst in the Technology & Media sector, his extensive knowledge delivers in-depth commentary and analysis to highlight current trends and add expert context to the numbers.

News media is able to provide both important information as well as constant entertainment value – which is why nearly all Canadians consume its content. Yet the industry faces challenges after the internet disrupted its traditional revenue models. The result is a situation where news content consumption is almost ubiquitous, but relatively few people are paying for it. Furthermore, the issues around trust and the acceptability of news media companies holding an opinion make it clear that this is a very nuanced industry with many questions to be answered Scott Stewart
Senior Technology and Media Analyst

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Table of contents

  1. Overview

    • What you need to know
      • Definition
      • Executive Summary

        • News consumption is ubiquitous and spread across many sources
          • News consumption is shifting online
            • The news industry has a trust issue
              • Canadians are keeping a close eye on their American neighbours
                • News outlets walk a fine line when including opinion in their reporting
                  • Paying news consumers are in the minority
                    • One demographic stands out from the rest: 25-34 year old men
                      • What it means
                      • The Market – What You Need to Know

                        • The internet is changing how people read and retain information
                          • The impact of the 24-hour news cycle
                            • How Canadians access American news
                              • The ad market has shifted because of Google and Facebook
                                • The role of The Canadian Press
                                  • The shrinking news media labour force
                                  • Market Factors

                                    • The internet is changing how people read and retain information
                                      • The impact of the 24-hour news cycle
                                        • How Canadians access American news
                                          • The ad market has shifted because of Google and Facebook
                                            • The role of The Canadian Press
                                              • The shrinking news media labour force
                                              • Key Players – What You Need to Know

                                                • Media conglomerates are leveraging size to remain viable
                                                  • Traditional news organizations are making the digital shift
                                                    • Social media companies are trying to control fake news
                                                      • If paid subscriptions succeed, news sources could be more divisive
                                                        • News companies are launching with a focus on the internet
                                                          • New ways of getting the news
                                                          • What’s Working?

                                                            • Media conglomerates leveraging size to remain viable
                                                              • Traditional news organizations are making the digital shift
                                                              • Challenges

                                                                • Social media companies are trying to control fake news
                                                                  • If paid subscriptions succeed, news sources could be more divisive
                                                                  • What’s Next?

                                                                    • News companies are launching with a focus on the internet
                                                                      • New ways of getting the news
                                                                      • The Consumer – What You Need to Know

                                                                        • Sources of news content
                                                                          • How consumers get the news
                                                                            • Trust issues with news sources
                                                                              • The role of US news in Canada’s news landscape
                                                                                • Opinion and politics in news coverage
                                                                                  • Paid news content
                                                                                    • Exploring the 25-34 year old male news consumer
                                                                                    • Sources of News Content

                                                                                      • News media is consumed by almost the entire market
                                                                                        • Figure 1: Repertoire: number of news sources used in past three months, May 2019
                                                                                        • Figure 2: Past three-month news source usage, May 2019
                                                                                      • Different news sources have clear demographic skews
                                                                                        • Figure 3: Past three-month news sources: TV and radio vs social media, by age, May 2019
                                                                                        • Figure 4: Past three-month news sources: TV, by age, May 2019
                                                                                      • A major disparity in local vs national newspapers
                                                                                        • Figure 5: Past three-month news sources: newspapers, by age, May 2019
                                                                                        • Figure 6: Past three-month news sources: newspapers, by region, May 2019
                                                                                    • How Consumers Get the News

                                                                                      • News consumption is shifting online
                                                                                          • Figure 7: Method of accessing news source: computer/mobile device, May 2019
                                                                                          • Figure 8: Method of accessing news source: computer/mobile, by age, May 2019
                                                                                        • Mobile platforms are emerging to play a bigger role in news
                                                                                            • Figure 9: Method of accessing news source: mobile, May 2019
                                                                                            • Figure 10: Get most news on a mobile device, by age, May 2019
                                                                                        • Trust Issues with News Sources

                                                                                          • Trust in the mainstream media is low
                                                                                            • Figure 11: I generally trust the mainstream media, by age, May 2019
                                                                                            • Figure 12: I generally trust the mainstream media, by education level (age 25+), May 2019
                                                                                            • Figure 13: I generally trust the mainstream media, by financial situation, May 2019
                                                                                          • Half of consumers are using alternative news sources
                                                                                            • Figure 14: I use alternative media sources to get the news, by age and gender, May 2019
                                                                                            • Figure 15: I use alternative media sources to get the news, by race, May 2019
                                                                                            • Figure 16: I use alternative media sources to get the news, by language spoken at home, May 2019
                                                                                        • The Role of US News in Canada’s News Landscape

                                                                                          • Many Canadians are watching US news
                                                                                            • Figure 17: News channels/shows watched regularly, May 2019
                                                                                            • Figure 18: News channels/shows watched recently, by age, May 2019
                                                                                          • Half of Canadians follow US news closely
                                                                                            • Figure 19: I follow US news closely, by living area, May 2019
                                                                                            • Figure 20: I follow US news closely, by household income, May 2019
                                                                                            • Figure 21: I follow US news closely, by education level, May 2019
                                                                                          • Using “fake news” to measure Canada’s connection to the US
                                                                                            • Figure 22: Monthly mentions of “fake news” and “#fakenews” on Twitter, US, January 2016-May 2019
                                                                                            • Figure 23: Monthly mentions of “fake news” and “#fakenews” on Twitter, Canada, January 2016-May 2019
                                                                                        • Opinion and Politics in News Coverage

                                                                                          • Few people think that news organizations should express opinions
                                                                                            • Figure 24: It’s acceptable for a news organization to express an opinion, by age, May 2019
                                                                                          • Some avoid news sources that don’t have the same political opinion
                                                                                            • Figure 25: I avoid news outlets that don’t share my political leanings, by age and gender, May 2019
                                                                                            • Figure 26: I avoid news outlets that don’t share my political leanings, by news channels/shows watched, May 2019
                                                                                          • Comments on news articles are not usually representative
                                                                                            • Figure 27: I regularly comment on online news articles, by age and gender, May 2019
                                                                                            • Figure 28: I regularly comment on online news articles, by gender and household composition, May 2019
                                                                                        • Paid News Content

                                                                                          • Paying news consumers are in the minority
                                                                                              • Figure 29: Pay for news services, by age and gender, May 2019
                                                                                              • Figure 30: Pay for news services, by household income, May 2019
                                                                                              • Figure 31: Pay for news services, by living location, May 2019
                                                                                            • Most non-paying consumers will be difficult to sway
                                                                                              • Figure 32: News site features willing to pay for, pay for news vs don’t pay for news, May 2019
                                                                                              • Figure 33: News site features willing to pay for: “none”, by age, May 2019
                                                                                          • Exploring the 25-34 Year Old Male News Consumer

                                                                                            • 25-34 year old men are heavy news consumers
                                                                                                • Figure 34: Often have a news channel on in the background, by age and gender, May 2019
                                                                                                • Figure 35: Pay for news services, by age and gender, May 2019
                                                                                                • Figure 36: News channels/shows watched regularly, by age and gender, May 2019
                                                                                              • Young men are more involved in the news industry
                                                                                                • Figure 37: Interaction with online news articles, by age and gender, May 2019
                                                                                            • Appendix – Data Sources and Abbreviations

                                                                                              • Data sources
                                                                                                • Consumer survey data
                                                                                                  • Consumer qualitative research
                                                                                                    • Abbreviations and terms
                                                                                                      • Abbreviations
                                                                                                        • Terms