Columbia Missourian Audience Survey Results

The goal of the Missourian Audience Survey has been to learn about how Missourian readers interact with the newspaper and its staff, specifically on its website, and its online social networking arms: Facebook and Twitter. The survey, hosted by SurveyMonkey, was posted and promoted on the Missourian’s Facebook and Twitter pages starting in late February 2011. Right afteward, the Missourian published a column about it by Joy Mayer. As of March 13, 2011, we have heard from 157 respondents. These results are based on those responses.

Thanks to all who participated! If you’d like to ask questions or share more of your thoughts about your interactions with the Missourian, please shoot an e-mail to Joy Mayer, at

Audience interaction with

The survey finds that 70 percent of respondents have never posted a comment on an article published on

To the question “Why did you comment on a story on the Missourian website?,” where more than one answer is allowed, respondents most commonly stated “I had a strong opinion on the issue at hand” (59 percent of respondents who said they have commented). This answer was followed closely by “The issue was relevant to me” (57 percent) and “I was responding to a previous comment” (52 percent).

The most common answer to the question “How often do you read the Missourian?” is “Several times a week,” representing 36.4 percent of all respondents.

Audience interaction with the Missourian’s Facebook page

Out of 133 respondents who say they use Facebook, 42 percent of the 133 Facebook users say they have clicked ‘Like’ for the Missourian’s page. But, 82.4 percent say they have never actually interacted with the Missourian’s Facebook page. Interestingly, 45 percent of those Facebook users say they have shared the Missourian’s content on the social networking site.

Audience interaction with the Missourian’s Twitter account

Out of 100 respondents who use Twitter, 88 percent say they follow at least one of the Missourian’s Twitter accounts — @CoMissourian, @CoMissourianNow and @CoMoSports. About 48 percent of those Twitter users say they have interacted with the Missourian’s account. Interestingly, 66 percent of those Twittering respondents say they have shared content from the Missourian through tweets — more than the percentage of followers itself.

Interest in community meet-ups or receiving news alerts

From the 136 respondents who answered to the question “If the community were invited to informally meet and chat with Missourian staff — with snacks! — would you be interested in participating?”, about 45 percent say they would be interested in attending such meet-ups.

When asked “Would you be interested in receiving news alerts from the Missourian?” 66.9 percent of the respondents say they are not interested. As for those who say they would be interested, more prefer to receive news alerts (26.8 percent of all respondents, as compared to 11.3 percent who say they prefer text alerts).

General respondent demographics — highlights

The gender divide among the survey respondents is almost right down the middle: 51 percent female and 49 percent male. The biggest chunk of respondents (32.5 percent) are aged 23-32 years old and are current MU students (34.4 percent), followed closely by former student, faculty or employee (31.8 percent). A little more than half of the respondents (52 percent) say they know at least one member of the Missourian staff personally.