NAA President and CEO Caroline Little comments on ABC FAS-FAX report for six-month period ending September 30, 2012
Director of Communications
October 30, 2012
In recent years, newspaper companies across the country have been updating the models for disseminating content to ensure there are multiple platforms that enable readers to find the great content being generated by these outlets. Recent data reveals that more than half of newspaper readers currently use multiple platforms, including websites, apps and mobile devices, to access their news. As a result, newspapers have been making calculated and deliberate decisions to rebalance their revenue mix, driving profitable circulation.
We are encouraged that the aggregate totals from the Audit Bureau of Circulations' FAS-FAX report show the circulation trend for newspapers is essentially flat, with weekday circulation down slightly and Sunday circulation up more than a half percent. We are confident that the changes the industry is making are having a beneficial effect on newspaper distribution.
It is important to note that there is some positive data in the ABC FAS-FAX report. Newspapers are managing the transition to digital and are continuing to move forward with monetizing their digital offerings. Digital circulation – much of it paid – accounts for 15 percent of total daily circulation and 8.7 percent of the Sunday total. The willingness of consumers to pay for online content speaks to the value of newspaper products and the level of newspaper engagement with readers.
Sunday circulation remains strong. Despite the higher prices and the subsequent revenue gains, total Sunday circulation is up, according to the FAS-FAX report. This reflects gains in digital circulation among the largest newspapers and the continued popularity of the Sunday print product in most other markets.
As an industry, we understand that change is necessary to compete and excel in an evolving environment. We are confident that the appropriate steps are being taken to ensure the sustained success of newspapers and the instrumental content they provide.
NAA is a nonprofit organization representing nearly 2,000 newspapers and their multiplatform businesses in the United States and Canada. NAA members include daily newspapers, as well as nondailies, other print publications and online products. Headquartered near Washington, D.C., in Arlington, Va., the association focuses on the major issues that affect today's newspaper industry: public policy/legal matters, advertising revenue growth and audience development across the medium's broad portfolio of products and digital platforms. Information about NAA and the industry also may be found at www.naa.org.