'Day in the Life' report shows Internet primary BI source for C-suite

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The Internet is the primary source of business information for C-level executives, according to research from and Gartner Inc. released earlier this year. The report, “Day in the Life of C-Level Executives, Part VIII,” was based on an online survey of 629 senior executives, including 125 C-level executives, conducted last November and December. This is the eighth edition of the study, which debuted in 2002. (It has been conducted more than once a year in some years.) The latest study found that among C-level executives, 67% said the Web was the single most important source of business information. Newspapers were a distant second, cited by 18%, followed by magazines (6%), trade publications (3%), television (3%) and radio (2%). “There has been an incremental change over time,” said Bruce Rogers, VP-marketing at, pointing to the results. “When this study first came out in 2002, it was groundbreaking. No one could believe that C-level executives were spending a significant amount of time online. Now, it is gratifying to show that over time, C-level execs are spending more time online than on any other medium.” Fifty-seven percent of the C-level executives surveyed for the latest study said they access the Web first thing in the morning, compared with 49% who said they read the newspaper first thing in the morning (respondents could select more than one response). “Their e-mail is always on. They are going to Web sites and checking their e-mail instead of picking up the newspaper. That trend has continued over the years,” Rogers said. C-level executives were also asked, “Which media channel do you find provides the most informative advertising regarding products for your business or personal life?” The Web was cited by the highest percentage of respondents (41%), followed by magazines (16%), TV (15%), trade publications (11%),; newspapers (10%) and radio (4%). The survey also looked at how much time executives spend with different media channels each week. C-level executives average 15 hours per week using the Internet; eight hours watching TV; five hours listening to radio; five hours reading newspapers; and four hours reading magazines, according to the study. When asked what tasks they generally do online, 82% of C-level executives said they use search engines; 73% do online banking; 71% shop for travel services; 64% pay bills; 61% read reviews about products or entertainment options; 59% use the Web for personal e-mail; and 45% use instant messaging. Also, 40% of C-level executives watch online videos; 36% buy or sell stock or conduct other financial transactions online; 34% request online help with products or services they own; and 31% click on ads when they find something they are interested in. When asked about their daily work routine, 84% of C-level execs said they check their e-mail before they do other work; 55% read business or financial e-newsletters; 50% visit business or financial sites before doing other work; and 38% check their financial portfolios. M
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