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Do people read less in recession?
It’s time the print media recognises this fact; and takes tactical action

T he United States of America is perhaps at its worst stage in history. Though it doesn’t look like the 1930s recession, the current slowdown is still leaving equally severe implications. It’s not just banks and finance companies that seem to be on the loser’s panel (losing around $975 billion in the latest sub-prime collapse), even newspaper companies and print media houses are now facing the hit.

The Audit Bureau of Circulations (ABC) in the US revealed that the circulation of almost all 530 dailies in the US is on an average 3.6% lower over the last year. And for Sunday papers, it is 4.6% lower. Revenue generation fell by 22.7%. The total revenue in 2007 came down to $42.2 billion after reaching its peak $48.7 billion in 2000. The New York Times, one of the top newspapers, also tops the list of those hit. The Grey Lady’s circulation has come down by 3.9% and revenue by 2.5%. Of course, close to free and extensive access to the internet, which provides updates by innumerably different sources, and increasing popularity of blogs, which are gradually becoming centre for news and analysis, is a reason for a drop in circulation. But one should note that advertising revenues have gone down primarily because of the housing sector collapse, as this sector was a prime source for classified advertising.

It’s obviously not the end of print journalism (at least, not right now), but it’s an alert to journalists, media companies and owners who previously thought that recession or no recession, circulation and advertising revenues couldn’t ever go down. It’s also a good time to understand that in bad times, those in media should start thinking about... advertising themselves! Believe us, it worked for a man we know of as Ogilvy! And he bet everything he had to say it’ll work for you!

By:- B&E

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