Global-round-up: Circulation betters ad revenue

Global-round-up: Circulation betters ad revenue

Newspapers have taken in more money from circulation on average than they have from advertising for the first time, according to global industry body WAN-IFRA.

Circulation in 2014 brought newspapers $92 billion globally, while advertising generated $87 billion. The news is contained in a report released this week as WAN-IFRA holds its annual summit in Washington.

“The basic assumption of the news business model – the subsidy that advertisers have long provided to news content – is gone,” WAN-IFRA secretary general Larry Kilman said in a statement.

The survey also found that 93 per cent of revenue for newspaper media companies still comes from print rather than digital, and print newspapers are read by 2.7 billion people across the world. More than 80 per cent of adults read newspaper media in Australia, the UK and Chile.

Print circulation is up on average, with a lift of 6.4 per cent globally. There were significant increases in circulation in India, South America, the Middle East and Africa, but declines in Europe, North America and Australia.

Despite the lift in global print circulation, advertising was down 5.2 per cent with a 7.5 per cent decline in North America.

Digital advertising grew 8.5 per cent, and digital audiences on desktop platforms dropped for the first time.

Mobile readership continued to rise, however.

Detail from the WAN-IFRA World Press Trends survey can be seen here.

Engagement with print ‘very strong’: Sorrell

Readership metrics need to focus on measuring reader engagement which would highlight individuals’ attachment to print newspapers, WPP chief executive Martin Sorrell has said in London.

Mr Sorrell is one of the most powerful advertising executives in the world and runs the world’s biggest advertising group.

He said US data showed the advertising industry invested a disproportionate amount of money into newspapers, based on the amount of time consumers spent with print. This would suggest a disconnect, he said.

“But on the other hand, if you look at data which shows the engagement between people and [newspaper media], the engagement of individuals with a physical newspaper is very high indeed,” Mr Sorrell said on BBC radio’s Media Show this week.

“Traditional ways of measuring audiences aren’t [showing that],” he said.

He has previously urged agencies to spend more money in print media, saying they were “more effective than people give them credit [for].”

Rusbridger leaves Guardian after 20 years

Alan Rusbridger has been replaced by Katherine Viner as editor of The Guardian following his retirement after 20 years in the job.

There have only been 10 editors of The Guardian since 1821.

In a farewell note published by the newspaper, Mr Rusbridger wrote, “The Guardian is much bigger than any one editor.

“A rival kindly took me out to lunch soon after I started and reassured me: ‘If I took a day off, there are six assistant editors who would have a completely different view of what my paper should be. If you take the day off, the building itself would produce The Guardian’.”

He said that despite the huge change over decades the newspaper business had experienced since he was appointed editor in 1995, “the economic model of what we do now is still in its infancy.”

“Twenty years ago, no-one asked a newspaper editor about their business model. Now, it’s one of the first questions,” he said.

Katherine Viner, his replacement, had previously edited The Guardian Australia when it was launched two years ago. She went on to edit the US edition.

A former Guardian Australia journalist and the current deputy editor of the US edition, Lee Glendinning, has been appointed editor there to replace Ms Viner.

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