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In partnership with the University of Canberra, we developed ACM Heartbeat of Australia to gain an in-depth picture of the sentiment of Australians; how they feel, their concerns, how they connect to their community and their relationship with local news and advertising. 

Now in its second year, this study provides a deeper understanding of Australian communities to inform your marketing strategy.

Click here to book your ACM Heartbeat of Australia presentation.

Positivity in the regions

Regional Australians are much more positive than those living in the capital cities:

  • Regional Australians are 14% more satisfied with their life as a whole vs the five capital cities. 
  • Regional Australians are less concerned about financial debt (26% vs 33% metro).
  • 88% of regional Australians say that knowing what is going on in their community helps them feel connected (vs 67% metro).
  • 86% of regional Australians agree that accessing news and stories about their community helps them feel a sense of belonging to the place they live.
  • Regional Australians feel 12% more content about the future than metro Australians (78% v 66%).
  • Regional Australians feel 15% less anxious than metro Australians (44% v 59%).

Local news drives connection

There is a direct relationship between the consumption of news and a connected community:

  • Local mastheads are the most trusted source of news in the regions 66%
  • 81% of regional Australians claim their most preferred news content is about their region, city or town. 
  • 93% of regional Australians access local news to understand things that might affect them.
  • 58% of regional Australians pay for local news to help ensure it continues to exist.
  • 65% of regional Australians like to talk to others about local news. 
  • 84% of regional Australians agree that local news provides content that helps them feel connected to the people and place they live.

Advertising strengthens communities

Our audiences are ready to hear your brand story. 

  • 77% of regional Australians believe that advertising in local newspapers helps ensure news mastheads continue to exist.
  • 53% of regional Australians believe advertising in their local newspapers helps them find out about products and services
  • 54% of regional Australians feel more engaged with advertising localised to where they live.
  • 66% of regional Australians believe localised advertising feels more relevant to them.
  • 36% of regional Australians agree advertising in local newspapers helps them make purchase decisions.
  • 40% of regional Australians like to learn about advertisers doing good things in their community (vs 24% metro).
  • Regional Australians would like to see national brands, local businesses and governments advertise more to support their local news.
Source: ACM Heartbeat of Australia, 2023. n=6,361.