"Sophisticated Eaters and Primitive Cooks"
here are the demographics for chow, as reported by jim leff on his blog (i'm still looking for the chowhound demographics, though):
Tuesday, July 6, 2010
Chowhound Demographics: Then and Now
Fascinating. Here are CBS' demographic figures for Chow.com (which has subsumed Chowhound, in terms of branding, if not, by any means, in terms of traffic).
Let's compare this data to the results of market research we did way back in 2001:
2001: 57% have income over $75K (30% over $125K)
2010: 34% have income over $100K
2001: 28% are age 35 - 44, and 21% are age 45 - 54
2010: 35% are age 35 - 49
2001: 89% have college degrees
2010: 57% "college" (presumably including non-graduates)
2001: 52% women 48% men
2010: 59% women 41% men
this chart shows "estimated" traffic to chowhound, and it seems like the peaks coincide with october run-up to thanksgiving and then another spike in january ("i'm gonna start a new regime" time?) i have zero idea how accurate this chart is, but it is interesting to think about peak traffic "seasons". http://www.quantcast.com/chowhound.com
looks like chow is doing very well, year-on-year: http://www.cbsinteractive.com/oneshee...
look at this, from the same cbs source:
Engaged and immersive environments
Addictive social content such as the MYCHOW profile pages, the Chowhound discussion board, games features and Facebook connect allow visitors to uniquely connect around their passion for food
Premium content for a premium audience
Affluent and loyal visitors are obsessed with Chow's guidance on the basics and inspiration for the not-so basic
Innovative ad opportunities
Integrated advertising programs that run across multiple platforms including online, mobile and guerilla marketing"""<<<<
Damn! I hit those demographics everywhere except in income! How did my life get so off track?!?!
My favorite chow ads were showing last year on the little screens above the gas pumps at the rest stops on the Mass Turnpike. I seem to remember it was something like a short blip showing how to crush walnuts, followed by a plea to come to the site. At least it got a smile from me.
I thought the comparison was interesting between 2001 and now. However, I would be more interested in the comparison between 2006, just before the site was sold, and today. My guess is the numbers would not be that different. In 2001 Chowhound was almost brand new and held a unique nitch on the web. It still does, but with the plethora of food blogs and other food sites around 2006 the numbers were probably different.
One thing that seems really different ... and I could be wrong ... but it seemed Jim courted the food savy and personally made an effort to attract that type of poster to the site. People of all levels of knowledge were embraced and I am guessing many, like me, found themselves attracted to the dizzyng depth of knowledge and expertise here.
The difference is in that statement. Today the site is aming for the primitive poster. There are still the smart posters who remain and drop in from time to time, but the focus isnt on attracting them.
Egullet gets a lot more food savy posters, but it takes itself way too seriously and doesn't have a sense of fun. Yelp goes for the other end of the spectrum.
here are the demographics for chow:
Income 100K + (34%)
Age 35 - 49 (35%)
Education College (57%)
Gender Female (59%)
from the link that some may not follow. does anyone on chowhound regularly even look at chow? i don't know what is edgy or irreverent on chow except the often-tacky attention-grabbing headlines or odd social advice. looing at it again just now, its content does seem to aim for the aspiring better cook. but, "primitive" cook? well, i guess it is "just" a semantic difference. or another example of an attention-grabbing headline. voila! it worked to get my attention.
what is the chowhound demographic, i wonder?
does it make a difference that cbs is doing this? it owns chow and chowhound, right? how do they "sell" chowhound? i remember that little kerfluffle a while back......from some comments made at a dinner by a chow publicist (?). i can't recall the thread's title, but i'd like to re-read it again in light of this new ad-purchase promotion.
re: Chris VR
no, i think it was older... and a lot more contentious. people were "ticked" about what they understood to be disparaging remarks about chowhounds by those "in the know." there was some official "explanation" that was given, and how we chowhounds had misunderstood what was really said, in context. maybe the thread is gone!
dang, i wish i could recall it better.
I don't think cbs distinguishes between Chow and Chowhound. It is the same to them. So I think the adjectives probably apply to both sites.
As to the lower traffic on Chow, that is to be expected as it is a more static site. There is a limited staff and there are only so many articles that can be published each week. Chowhound has daily participation of hundreds of thousands.
The only real comment I have is the choice of the word 'primitive'; is unfortunate. Does that really appeal to advertisers? Would you want to advertise your fancy cookware to an audiance of neophytes which the statement implies don't know their way around the kitchen?
Someone should have got a thesaurus or dictionary out before using that word. Some of the definitions are hilarious and if I were an advertiser who was unfamiliar with the site I'd run the other way.
Just a few Thesaurus entries: boorish, lowbrow, tasteless, uncouth, uncultured, unsophisticated, simple, ancient, obsolete, old-fashioned, out of date, passé,
Yep. That's the audiance that I'd want to throw my precious advertising budget.
I cut and pasted that quote from the website. Someone should have checked the content for typos. So yeah, lots of confidence in someone trying to lure me when the copy isn't even carefully checked.
Whatever one may think about Chow, the reality is that those are the people who keep Chowhound alive. So, IMO, it is a happy alliance.
That is not from Chowhound, it is from CBS that owns Chowhound. Here's the link
The rest of the quote for those who do not follow links is ...
" The site for sophisticated eaters but primitive cooks. CHOW is for food enthusiast who want insight on the basics and inspiration on the not so basics. The come to CHOW because it’s different—with a unique, sometimes edgy, and always informative perspective on good food. Our premium content and often irreverent point of view gets people talking. CHOW provides advice on what to eat, where to go, what to buy and what to make. Our original content and different take on food, combined with a passionate audience foster unique opportunities for advertisers."