Checking messages: First, last and always.

cemIf you think your personal and professional life has become consumed with checking messages ad nauseum, you’re not alone.

Recently, Adestra and Flagship Research surveyed Internet-using Americans for eMarketer to find out just how pervasive the practice of checking messages has become.

The results surprise no one — even if they’re a bit depressing to contemplate.

Asked to cite when their first message check of the day is typically done, here’s what the eMarketer survey found:

  • I check messages first thing, before anything else: ~39% reported
  • After coffee/tea but before breakfast: ~22%
  • After breakfast but before departing for work: ~20%
  • On the way to work: ~4%
  • Once at work: ~8%
  • Later in the day: ~3%
  • Other responses: ~4%

[I was a little surprised to find myself in a distinct minority (checking messages upon arriving at work) … but I suppose when one gets to the office at 07:00 hrs. each workday, as I do, that may be when most others are en route to the office or still at home.]

Not surprisingly, the “check messages before anything else” contingent is more heavily represented by younger people, with over 45% of the survey’s respondents under the age of 35 reporting that they check messages first thing in the day.

The type of messages in question run the gamut from e-mail to text, social media and voicemail. But it’s overwhelmingly e-mail and text messaging apps that smartphone users check first thing in the day:

  • Text messaging: ~67% check this mobile app first
  • E-mail: ~63%
  • Facebook: ~48%
  • Weather app: ~44%
  • Calendar app: ~30%
  • News app: ~21%
  • Games: ~19%
  • Instagram: ~16%
  • Pandora: ~16%
  • Other social media: ~9%
  • Other apps: ~7%

More details on the eMarketer survey can be found here.

What are your message checking practices — and how are they different or similar to these survey results?