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THE RESEARCH PROPOSAL

ON

HOW SOCIAL MEDIA CONTENT


AFFECTS THE READERSHIP OF THE PAPER

RESEARCHER
Gaurav Pote
BBA Student, KUSOM
DATE:
April 21, 2015

PROBLEM STATEMENT
After they conceived Internet blogs and online newspapers the 90s, the print
media has been suffering greatly in terms of readership. And, to add more trouble, along
comes the social media the best and worst thing that has happened to man. Its advent
has not only reduced the readership of the print media even more significantly but has
also posed to be the single greatest competitor in the entire history of print media. Since it
has several obvious advantages over the print media, low cost, more speed, and wider
outreach for instance, most print media have actually used the social media for their own
advantage instead of fighting impossible battle against it. This trend is apparent even in
the context of Nepali media. However, it is still debatable if this approach is actually
working. It seems as if the use of social media has profited the print media, but it is still
to be quantified and analysed if it really does, and even if it does, whether or not the
social media is being used optimally is yet another question.
In other words, the use of social media alone is not enough for the print media but
it is also important to understand how the social media content augment the readership of
the print media, and up to what extent. The print media also needs to know if it is using
the social media up to its full extent. For that purpose, the idea of this research study has
been conceived.

OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY


The following are the objectives of this research study:
a. To determine whether and how much, in a print media, the social media content
actually augments the print media content, or to measure the correlation between the
online engagement and the readership of that print media.
b. To determine if the use of the social media is optimal.
RESEARCH QUESTIONS

The following are the research questions for this particular research study:
a. Is there a strong relationship between the print media content and the social media
content? How closely are the related?
b. How can the social media content be optimised to increase the readership?

JUSTIFICATION OF THE STUDY


The print media is an expensive venture with a lot of inherent risks. The
popularity of social media has cut down the readership of the print media. As a solution
to that problem, they have tried using social media to promote the content of the print.
This study will fulfil the abovementioned objectives and in doing so paint a clear
picture about the relation between the two and the right way to go about it. The outcome
of this study will quantify both the issues and generate outcome that will greatly benefit
the Nepali print media that have had online presence in the social media sphere.

THEORITICAL FRAMEWORK
PRINT MEDIA

SOCIAL MEDIA

READERSHIP OF

CONTENT (PMC)

CONTENT (SMC)

THE PRINT MEDIA

Independent Variable

Intervening Variable

Dependent Variable

METHODOLOGY
The research study will be a longitudinal study conducted over the period of three
weeks. With the analysis of the three weekly issues of any paper/magazine, its print

content and its readership, and the social content, the research will also entail two
separate survey questionnaires. The first one will be sent to the 100 verified readers (from
the Facebook, Twitter and Instagram) and it will evaluate them on their reading
behaviour and their perception of the social and print content. The second is intended for
the employees of the print media to understand their social media posts and their level of
engagement. The questionnaire will be designed in Likert scale and the data will be
analysed through SPSS.
The independent variable here is the print media content (PMC), the readership of
which is being measured. So, the readership of that print media content is the dependent
variable in this causal relationship. The social media content (SMC) is the intervening
variable because it affects the causal relationship between PMC and readership without
altering their original relationship.