Readership of regional newspapers is on the rise, the latest emma (Enhanced Media Metrics Australia) data shows.
Mastheads such as The Geelong Advertiser and Illawarra Mercury have experienced readership growth, along with other titles.
Since June, The Geelong Advertiser has had a 6 per cent lift in readership and Illawarra Mercury 4 per cent, while the September election appears to have contributed to a spike in reader retention for The Canberra Times.
Regional newspapers have been included in the monthly emma data since June, allowing for planning alongside metro and national titles – a feature unique to the survey.
The Newspaper Works chief executive Mark Hollands said the continuing growth in total audience numbers provided reason for industry optimism for the year ahead. “The rebound in retail, and the strong relationship between that sector and newspaper media, should prove a highlight for 2014,” he said.
Mr Hollands said emma data showed newspaper readers were bigger spenders than non-readers. “They spend 28 per cent more on furniture and homewares, and 21 per cent more on electronics. And 48 per cent of them have shopped online in the last four weeks.
“In 2014, advertisers and agencies should be capitalising on these and other strengths of newspaper media.”
The trend for print audiences is down slightly on weekdays, slipping 0.7 per cent over five months. It was stable in November compared to October, and the overall readership continues to be bolstered by growth in digital numbers.
“Overall we are seeing only the slightest negative movements with print audiences, aligning to circulation and copy sale trends, as digital audiences continue to climb,” Mr Hollands said.
Each monthly emma report features 12-month rolling data with cross-platform audience figures, readership of all titles, comprehensive consumer profiles and product data, plus fused Nielsen Online Ratings data.
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