Internet usage in Kenya triples from 13% to 46% thanks to social media

The increased use of social media, propelled by the access to mobile phones in the majority of Kenyan households, continues to gain traction in the country.

A report launched by Ipsos Kenya on Tuesday indicates that so far, mobile phone usage is at 95% penetration in Kenyan households.

The so-called report Kenya Media Establishment Survey 2022also shows that radio remains queen with an audience of 27.3 million out of 34 million.

The TV audience also grew to 25.5 million. Internet use is at 16 million while print is lagging behind at 6 million, revealing a declining reading culture among a majority of Kenyans that stands at 8%. However, more and more smart TVs are entering rural areas due to the availability of electricity and solar power.

According to Ipsos chief executive Chris Githaiga, the company is seeking to work with stakeholders to redefine the media environment which has grown exponentially since the last survey, conducted seven years ago.

The report also revealed the changing culture in access to financial services, with most Kenyans preferring mobile banking services, chamas, Saccos and micro-finance institutions to banks.

Most of the changes were informed by the ravages of Covid 19, loss of disposable income and difficult economic times.

Speaking at the launch in Nairobi, Githaiga noted that Kenya has seen accelerated growth and diversity of media touchpoints since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. There are some interesting findings from the data, for example the growth of digital, which is not surprising, content that resonates with audiences, savings habits of Kenyans, and more.

The study shows that the mobile device has been the main disruptor of the media landscape with an increase in ownership from 79% to 95% and smartphone growth from 19% to 51%.

Ownership of televisions has increased from 32% to 53%, while the adaptation of digital television has increased ownership of pay-per-view set-top boxes from 10% to 28%.

“We found that internet usage more than tripled from 13% to 46%, largely due to social media. We also found that social apps like Facebook, Twitter, and Google degrade faster as newer apps like Betting, TikTok, Telegram, and Opera become more appealing to young people. Print media, on the other hand, has been slowly migrating into the digital space,” Githaiga said.

The study also indicates that ownership of a regular/basic phone remains at 50% and listening has not increased significantly (from 76% to 79%). The growing influence of social media and the fluid nature of social media engagement are also unchanged.

Readership growth has remained flat at 8% per week.

Economically, the study shows that financial services are deepening with the dominance of mobile phones. About 71% of Kenyans use non-banking services, of which 38% save through mobile money, mobile banking (30%), chama/table banking (17%), SACCOS (6%), microfinance (4%). Around 17% of Kenyans have access to financial loans, of which 7% access credit facilities through mobile phones, 4% from family and friends, while 3% use chama/table banking.

Mr. Githaiga also pointed out that 12% of Kenyans are enrolled in the National Hospital Insurance Fund and 0.5 in other medical schemes.

“Would insurance and pension managers, who normally use the direct debit system, be looking to take advantage of the emerging mobile phone technology where the money seems to be flowing?” he posed.

On-hand advertising spending has continued to grow since 2015 with 2021 data estimated at KES 7 billion per month as many organizations look to maximize the return on their marketing budgets.

“Knowing your audience, understanding the issues they face and being aware of what they think of society – and your media in particular – are important factors in refining your offer to better inform public debate,” said said the Ipsos Kenya boss.

He added that the aim of the media establishment survey is to help media outlets and organizations produce better content that is more focused on audience needs and generate new ideas to produce related programs and materials. to the public. “It also gives sales and marketing teams the insights they need to try to monetize the content we produce and highlight new business development opportunities that can help you be more accessible to more people.” he declared.

Ipsos is a leading provider of measurement solutions to the media industry, developing and supplying PAMCo, RAJAR, Route, IPA Touch Points and the BARB establishment survey.

“We have helped provide a comprehensive understanding of consumer behavior across all media platforms. Ipsos in Kenya always seeks to answer three key questions: content, context and connections,” said Githaiga.

He said audience measurement will continue to grow in importance to meet the need for solid and credible media data for organizations, adding that the social marketing research company will continue to use the technology that is at the heart of life. consumers.

“Passive audience measurement is the gold standard and markets like Kenya need to invest in relevant technology to ensure fair play and accessibility to granular and accurate data,” Githaiga said.

The Kenya Media Establishment Survey 2022, released in June, examines the lifestyles, demographics and psychography of Kenyans in relation to how they perceive and consume media.

The study was conducted between April and May this year with a national sample of 10,000 people in all counties.

The last survey of media establishments in Kenya was conducted in 2015 with the advent of broadcasting in Kenya moving from analogue to digital transmission.