The 2021 Erdos & Morgan Opinion Leaders Study confirms that Global Climate Change remains the Nation’s Top Issue

| Press Release

Erdos & Morgan is proud to announce the release of their 2021 Opinion Leaders Study. This annual national survey is the industry’s leading syndicated study of contemporary issue involvement and media influence. For 40 years, the study has provided many of the most prestigious media, communications and advertising companies with the market’s primary source of opinion leader information.

The Opinion Leaders survey measures issue involvement and media consumption by the most influential people in the United States. The study includes over 190 of the most relevant issues facing the nation and over 130 media brands used to shape opinions related to those issues.

Benefits of the study include:

• Respondent involvement in over 190 specific issues that have high impact on governmental policy and the attitudes of others 

• Furnish advertisers and advertising agencies with measurements of the reach and influence of media brands serving the current opinion leader market

• Provide media companies with data and opportunities to sell products and services to marketers and advertising agencies 

• Offer individual media branded qualitative information 

As media platforms have expanded, the study has evolved as well. The digital media measurement includes the usage of websites, APPs and social media to create a total digital coverage, which can then be combined with print and/or broadcast figures. This provides the opportunity to evaluate which media brands have the greatest reach and impact on today’s most important issues. 

Opinion leaders, for the purpose of this study are defined as those individuals whose influence on a variety of issues including business, social, political, environmental and educational issues, help to shape the opinion of the general population. They exercise far reach and have a powerful impact on the opinions of their fellow Americans by framing and defining the issues that will largely determine the future course of the nation and/or current issues. 

The continuation of the Covid-19 pandemic in 2021 produced a lot of challenges for the U.S. workforce, with adapting to working from home (for those that could) being one of the biggest. To make sure the final data reflected a true representation of those under study, Erdos & Morgan adjusted the sample to include those working from home remotely and those still onsite at their place of employment.

The defined universe of 677,227 opinion leaders encompasses individuals from both the Public and Private sector. Responses are weighted based on their leadership group to represent the universe of each group. At a 95% Confidence Interval, the study is accurate to an error of +/- 1.1%. 

The private sector consists of leaders from the following sectors: Business/Finance, Communications and Media, Education, Law, Healthcare and Science. The public sector includes those from the Executive and Congressional branch of government and officials at the state/local level.  

The following are the Major Category Classifications of the issues covered in the study. 

  • Business Issues
  • Law & Legal Issues
  • Economic & Financial Issues
  • Legislative/Government Policy Issues
  • The Arts & Media Issues
  • Trade/Global Economic Issues
  • Health, Education and Human Services Issues
  • Environmental & Energy Issues
  • Science & Technology Issues
  • Defense & National Security Issues
  • Agricultural Issues

Based on this year’s findings, the top priority issue that opinion leaders are most involved with is Global Warming and Climate Change  ̶   #1 for the past two years. Other issues under scrutiny from both sides of the political agenda include Retirement Security/Pay Equity and regulations of the Pharmaceutical/Healthcare industries and Alternative Energy/Fuels.

The Erdos & Morgan Opinion Leader Study produces two distinct measurements for each media platform. A coverage figure, which is provided for all media brands within each platform and equates to an audience measurement based upon readership, viewership or unique monthly impressions. 

The second figure is a qualitative composition score that illustrates the attitudes of users of that specific brand. The qualitative composition figure is based upon the perception each reader/viewer has about the media they consume and is provided based on five attributes, which are as follows:

Influential      Objective      Current      Credible      Enjoyable 

These attributes were used for all three media platforms measured in this study, making comparisons easier between print, broadcast and digital.

Erdos & Morgan also releases a double-based edition of the Opinion Leaders Study. This double database is only available online and is based upon the results of both the current and previous editions of the study. 

Erdos & Morgan, as a subsidiary of Beta Research, is certified as a women’s business enterprise through the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC). 

For more information about the Opinion Leaders Study, other syndicated or custom media studies from Erdos & Morgan, please contact David March at (201) 236-0469 or