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Tapping into customers

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  • 3m readers went to a wine bar or pub for a drink in the past month
  • 9m newspaper media readers visited a BYO or licensed restaurant in the past 4 weeks
  • Last month, newspapers reached more pub-goers than Facebook.
  • Consumers rate newspapers second behind online search as media most useful when choosing a restaurant


Australia has a strong connection with the local pub, be it a sports bar, gastro pub, dive bar or RSL. It’s where we go to unwind, catch up with friends and swap stories over a drink.

The pubs, bars and nightclub industry is a major contributor to the economy with market research agency IBIS expect revenue in the sector to reach $16.8 billion for the 2015-2016 financial year1.

Despite impressive revenues, bar owners are operating in a challenging climate. The sector is facing increased regulation of alcohol and pokies, declining alcohol consumption and, in Sydney, the contentious lockout laws.

To stay profitable in tough trading conditions, owners are working hard to get patrons through their doors.

Consumer data from emma indicates that newspaper advertising can help pubs and clubs attract their target customers.

Top up on customers

Figures show that newspaper readers are a social bunch, going to pubs and clubs more than non-readers.

Some 4.3 million readers went to a wine bar or pub for a drink in the past month. They are 20 per cent more likely visit a pub than non-readers.

Some 3.4 million readers visited a local RSL or sports club for a drink recently.

Pub advertisers Face facts

Facebook is a popular advertising platform for pubs and clubs. However, the most popular social network in the country can’t match the reach of print newspapers for pub advertisers.

Of the 4.6 million Australians who went to the pub last month, 3.7 million picked up a newspaper, some 300,000 more than who used Facebook over the same period (3.4 million).

Reach locals with regional and community newspapers

Advertising in regional and community newspapers can help pub owners lift customer numbers with local area marketing.

Regional newspaper readers are 21 per cent more likely to visit their local pub than non-readers. Community newspaper readers are 43 per cent more likely to drink in their local RSL or sports club than non-readers.

Dining out rising

The restaurant sector is seeing strong growth as Australia’s love affair with food continues.

Changing social trends have fuelled strong growth for the restaurant industry over the past five years. According to IBIS, busier lifestyles and diminishing leisure time are encouraging more consumers to eat out with friends and family more often. The industry is expected to post revenues of $12 billion this financial year, a 2 per cent increase on 2014-152.

Like pubs and clubs, restaurants can also take advantage of the strong reach that newspaper media has among Australia’s social consumers.

Newspaper audience a tasty option

According to emma, 8.9 million newspaper media readers visited a BYO or licensed restaurant last month. It’s not just restaurants that readers like to dine in.

Two in five readers, some 6 million consumers, dine in a pub at least once a month.

Food sections on the menu

Restaurant advertisers will find newspaper media a compelling platform to reach consumers via their food and wine sections, both in print and online. Each month, more than 3 million Australians pick up a food and wine section of a print newspaper.

Nielsen Online Ratings data reports that in any given month, some 2.5million foodies visit a publisher-owned food site, such as Fairfax Media’s www.goodfood.com.au and, from News Corp Australia stable, www.taste.com.au .

Newspapers influence restaurant decisions

Data from emma indicates that newspapers have a strong influence over consumers’ choice of restaurant. Consumers rate newspapers second behind online search in terms of inspiring ideas on restaurants or pubs to eat in.

Online searches22.7
Social media14.0
Unaddressed mail or catalogues11.8
Online advertising7.8

Whether it be online or in print, advertisers looking to reach consumers who enjoy an evening out will find an engaged audience through newspaper media.

ANZAC Day Advertising

As ANZAC Day approaches, advertisers and publishers should note that the use of the ANZAC acronym is protected by government regulation and there are strict guidelines surrounding its use.

  1. IBISWorld Industry Report, Pubs, Bars & Nightclub, Jan 2016.
  2. IBISWorld Industry Report, Restaurants, Jan 2016.



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