For Immediate Release
Contact: Ned Lundquist
18 February 2008
Professional communicators positive about job market
From Strength to Strength: JOTW Survey Paints Picture of Strong Network, Optimistic, Committed Readers
(Delft, The Netherlands)—With two annual surveys reaching approximately 10% of its readership under its belt, the Job of the Week (JOTW) Network now has a clear idea about who its readers are, what their concerns are, and how best to generate commercial value without undermining the core of the JOTW proposition—its reliance on reader-generated job leads and other JOTW content.
JOTW is both a weekly e-mail networking newsletter for communication professionals, and a website (www.nedsjotw.com). There are presently 10,000 communication professionals who are signed up for the weekly newsletter. Subscriptions are free, and one can join the network by sending a blank email to JOTWfirstname.lastname@example.org.
“There is clearly solid satisfaction, with more than 90% of readers expressing a positive view of JOTW for two years running, though the number of readers considering JOTW excellent has slipped a little” said Delft-based JOTW research guru Mike Klein, who conducted and analyzed the survey. “There is also a clear steer that whatever revenue JOTW generates should be done on the sponsorship side rather than in selling subscriptions, which could lead to a downgrading of the product as contributors drop out of the network.”
“This clearly lines up with my approach”, said JOTW founder, editor and publisher Ned Lundquist, who lives in Springfield, Virginia. “The main revenue generators this past year have been the monthly sponsorships and the ‘Can’t Wait’ job opportunities, which have been a good start and haven’t unduly taxed the good will of our readership. Based on this survey, we’ll be looking more closely at sponsorships and alliances with others seeking access to the unique group of communicators we have to offer.”
(For information on sponsoring JOTW, contact Lundquist at email@example.com.)
JOTW readers occupy a clear niche of their own within the communications industry according to the Survey. Approximately half belong to at least one major professional body (IABC, PRSA, or other national PR bodies), but only 22% were participants in MyRagan, the industry’s largest social network platform. “JOTW readers clearly represent a growth opportunity for the leading players in the communication industry, and a fertile market for communication training and services, with more than 60% of readers saying they would purchase communication training and educational services from JOTW advertisers,” said Klein.
The JOTW network continues to be US-heavy, with well over 90% either being US citizens or US-based, though Lundquist aims to grow the readership internationally in the year to come. JOTW readers tend to be well employed (28% have incomes over $100,000, and more than 70% are employed full time, while 36% use JOTW as support for an active job search). A majority of readers are relatively optimistic about the job market for communicators in the near future, with 71% positive about this year, and 60% positive about the next two years.
JOTW readers are loyal. Of the various job listings available to them, the vast majority prefer JOTW over all the rest.
80% of respondents read JOTW weekly, and more than 35% of respondents had supplied at least one job posting for inclusion.
The following was an internal memorandum including key survey findings.
TO: Ned Lundquist
FROM: Mike Klein
DATE: 20 Jan 2008
RE: Key Findings, 2007 JOTW Survey
Having reviewed the results of the 2007 JOTW Survey and compared common questions between this past year’s survey and its predecessor, there are a number of key findings worth noting. These finding focus mainly on items that required analysis beyond the topline findings available through the SurveyMonkey program, or which could make a serious PR or commercial impact:
View of the Market:
A new question in 2007, asking how readers perceive the current job market and the job market one and two years out:
Perceptions of the Market
Very Good 23%
Good 44% 71% positive
Very Good 21%
Good 38% 62% positive
Two Years Out
Very Good 21%
Good 35% 60% positive
As the survey was done in late 2007. the level of optimism among the professional communicators in the JOTW readership is substantial.
Reader income levels demonstrated the seniority of JOTW readers in last year’s survey, and this year’s recipients showed a slight increase in the percentage above $100K and $85K
Income above $150k 8% 8%
Income above $100k 28% 26%
Income above $85k 42% 40%
Gender was added as a question in 2007; 71% of respondents were women
Gender + Income
Male respondents score somewhat higher than the average: 11% have incomes above $150k, 31% above $100k, and 53% above $85k.
Satisfaction with Job Resources
One quirk in Survey Monkey is that it computes rating percentages based on the total number of survey participants rather than the number rating each specific item, a distinction that makes a huge difference in assessing how users feel about a service that hasn’t been used by all participants.
Consequently, I recalculated the ratings for all of the job resources (and social networks below) to allow an apples-to-apples comparison:
Adj Poor Adj Fair Adj Good Adj VG Adj Excellent Adj Positive (G+VG+Exc)
JOTW '07 1% 5% 21% 37% 36% 95%
JOTW '06 1% 5% 15% 33% 46% 94%
IABC Intl 07 2% 17% 36% 30% 15% 81%
IABC Intl 06 3% 16% 33% 34% 14% 81%
Monster 07 16% 37% 32% 12% 2% 47%
Monster 06 14% 36% 34% 12% 4% 50%
Career Builder 07 16% 37% 33% 12% 2% 47%
Career Builder 06 14% 42% 31% 9% 2% 42%
Yahoo Hot Jobs 07 25% 48% 31% 5% 1% 37%
Yahoo Hot Jobs 06 22% 43% 29% 5% 1% 35%
Ladders 07 21% 34% 24% 16% 4% 44%
IABC Local Site 07 9% 27% 35% 21% 9% 64%
IABC Local Site 06 10% 24% 36% 22% 7% 66%
Ragan Jobs 14% 36% 39% 10% 2% 51%
InternalCommsJobs 22% 34% 35% 9% 0% 43%
A number of interesting findings emerged:
• JOTW’s overall positive score increased by one point, but its ‘excellent’ score dropped by 10 points. This could be the result of some of the more commercially-minded changes of the past year, but that would require probing beyond the scope of this Survey
• IABC’s International and Local sites were clear second and third for the second year running, with 81% positive for the International site and 64% positive for IABC’s local sites.
• Ragan Jobs was the only other site to break a 50% positive among its users, though used only by about 30% of users.
• Monster and Career Builder scored best of the mainstream sites with 47% positive this year, with Yahoo Hot Jobs trailing at 37%.
Social Network Takeup
Added to the Survey in 2007 was a request to participants to identify if they have used, and then rate a variety of social network platforms, including three focusing on the communications ‘fraternity’ (MyRagan, IABC Memberspeak and Melcrum’s Communicators Network) and four ‘mainstream’ sites: (Facebook, LinkedIn, MySpace and Plaxo).
A number of key findings:
• The communications social networks do not have high penetration among JOTW readers. Only 22% were able to rate MyRagan, 17% Memberspeak, and a mere 9% Melcrum’s Communicators Network.
Given the scope of JOTW’s readership, this indicates the communication social networks have much more ground to gain—and that a linkup with JOTW may be a potential way to dramatically increase participation on one of the sites.
• LinkedIn has been used by 60% of respondents, beating out Facebook and Myspace with about 40% each. The survey did not ask how many users used ‘none of the above’, but JOTW readers do not appear to be overwhelmingly engaging in the social networking trend.
• MyRagan and LinkedIn got the highest positive scores among those rating, at 73% each. Among communications sites, Memberspeak followed with 69% and Melcrum Communicators Network at 64%. Among general sites Facebook followed LinkedIn with 61% positive, and Plaxo and MySpace brought up the rear with scores in the low forties.
Willingness to Purchase
This year’s responses to the question about what types of resources and products they would be willing to purchase from JOTW advertisers are largely similar to last year’s:
Willingness to Purchase 2007 2006
Training and cont ed courses 65% 64%
Journals and training materials 63% 61%
Association Memberships 55% 52%
• JOTW readers remain a mid-senior to highly senior group of US-based (more than 99% indicated US citizenship or residence) communications pros, and thus a highly desirable audience for potential advertisers. There is no reason why JOTW shouldn’t be competing for the same ad dollars that go into Communications World or The Strategist.
• The potential for a tie-in with either Ragan or Melcrum is considerable—there is a considerable percentage of JOTW readers not connected with either of the key publishing/training/seminar houses, but about two thirds of the readership is in the market for what Ragan and Melcrum have to offer. Melcrum offers considerable reach into the UK and Commonwealth markets (and you, in turn, would offer them access to a massive US presence); Ragan is more US based but could help broaden US geographic reach.
• Your readers overwhelmingly like what you are doing. Your positive ratings are considerable (particularly as people tend to use surveys as a vehicle to bitch).