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ABC Jan-June 2016 Overview

If you ever find yourself at soiree, you know the ones where the Ferrero Rocher are tumbling about with reckless abandonment and you are asked ‘how’s the newspaper business in Ireland’ the most succinct answer, where your inquisitor will need to ask little else, is: “Every week we sell 1.5m less newspapers that we did five years ago”. The six month ABC’s were released today or the Island of Ireland Report as its otherwise known. The report shows that newspapers in Ireland are having a torrid time. The market, for National newspapers, is down 6.2% with the morning newspaper market down 5.6% and the Sunday market down 6.5%. The graphic below shows the rate of decline over the past few years and although the decline is slowing or levelling off, it’s still declining at a rate -6.2% per annum which would question the long term viability of newspaper publishing. Market JJ 2016 JJ 2015 Diff ‘000 Diff % Total Sunday 673,179 719,922 -46,743 -6.5% Total Morning 460,910 488,203 -27,293 -5.6%           Total Market* 1,145,064 1,220,403 -75,339 -6.2%   *The Morning Market includes The Herald, the total market also includes the Echo. In the graphic above the…

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ABC Jan-June 2016 Sunday Market

The Sunday Independent dropped below two hundred thousand to land on 199,000 and even 12,000 bulks couldn’t save them. They lost 14,000 over the year or 6.7% slightly above the overall Sunday Market decline. They further widened the gap between themselves and nearest rival, the Sunday World who had a bad first half dropping 15,000copies (unfortunate top spot accolade for that decline) over the year. It fell just shy of 9% of a decline but was eclipsed by the percentage falls of the Mirror and People. The Sunday Business Post, although falling 1,134 copies, did do the “least worst” as it fell by 3.5%, the smallest fall in percentage terms in the Sunday Market. In that were 1,000 multiples but that’s a marginal reduction on the previous year. Publication JJ 2016 JJ 2015 Diff ‘000 Diff % Sunday Independent  199,210 213,549 -14,339 -6.7% Sunday World 162,938 178,867 -15,929 -8.9% Sunday Business Post 31,364 32,498 -1,134 -3.5%           Daily Star Sunday 15,067 16,217 -1,150 -7.1% The Sun (Sunday) 57,820 53,047 4,773 9.0% Irish Sunday Mirror 26,628 30,601 -3,973 -13.0% The People 9,878 11,324 -1,446 -12.8% Total Tabloid 272,331 290,056 -17,725 -6.1%           Sunday…

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ABC Jan-June 2016 Morning Market

The top selling paper in the morning market remains the Irish Independent selling 102,000 every day down 7,000 (6%) on the previous year. It has nearly 17,000 in multiple copy sales, up slightly from last year, with 83.5% of its circulation figure ‘actively purchased’. The certificate also shows that it has 1,602 ‘digital subscriptions’, so there is a measure of migration in their 7,000 reduction in sales over the year with at least some of that moving to the digital platform. Its nearest rival is the Irish Times, in at 72,000, down 4,000 (5.5%) on the previous year. It too relies on the multiple copies to the tune of 10,000 every morning – up marginally on last year – and turns in an actively purchased figure of 86%. They also have a digital following, certified at 9,800 subscriptions every morning. Interestingly their cert gives a small geographic breakdown showing that 734 subscriptions are “Overseas (outside the UK/RoI)”. I didn’t have a preconceived number for their overseas figure but, given the flight of people from the country on the last five years, I thought it would have been higher. Publication JJ 2016 JJ 2015 Diff ‘000 Diff % Irish Independent 102,537…

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ABC Circulation July 2016

Even if a few papers grace us with figures, the monthly figures still churn away. July ABC’s today and for many a tabloid it’s a drop from the previous month of European football. The Tabloids are down nearly 4,000 but looking at The Sun it would seem that their pricing promotion pad off this month in recruiting some purchasers as their post promotion July is higher than their pre-promotion May figure by 7,000. The Mail is back 5,000 on the month but you couldn’t attribute that to European football. The only notable in the Sunday market is the Sunday Sun down 6,000 on the price promotion but, like the daily, ahead on May before the promotion. The Mail on Sunday lost 5,000 on the month and the Sunday Times dropped again this time by 2,300.   Title Jul-16 Jul-15 Jun-16 Y/Y M/M % Ch Y/Y % Ch Y/Y Daily Mirror 36,589 41,236 35,993 -4,647 596 -11% 2% Daily Record 336 337 269 -1 67 0% 25% Irish Daily Star 52,493 55,480 53,513 -2,987 -1,020 -5% -2% The Sun 65,625 60,543 69,115 5,082 -3,490 8% -5% Tabloids 155,043 157,596 158,890 -2,553 -3,847 -2% -2% Daily Express 2,781 2,778 2,575 3 206…

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ABC Test

The Sunday tabloids, in the main, fell below the Sunday market fall percentage. The Sunday Mirror and Sunday People by far underperformed compared to the market and are currently falling at a double digit pace at 13% each. Those are aggressive levels of decline especially for The People who are currently at just under 10,000 copies each Sunday. The Daily Star Sunday has all but given up on the Republic in terms of marketing, but still manages to find 15,000 customers to buy its product every Sunday. The Sunday Sun survived the drop felt by its direct competitors through a couple of factors I’d suggest. In June they ran a promotion halving the price of the publication to €0.50 throughout the month. The result was that it added just over 9,000 copies to their sales and 26% year on year for the month. So that one off promotion came just in time to be included in the six month figure. We are also dealing here with oranges and clementines. In the first six months of 2015, the period we are comparing to, the Sunday Sun had no multiple copy sales whatsoever. There’s obviously been a policy change of late as…