This is a bit text heavy – but struggle on! 

Without going through each title line by line the topline data can be summarised as follows:   

Papers no longer having a figure for July Dec 2009 are not necessarily defunct, many have opted out of the ABC audit for their own individual reasons.   

In July/Dec 2009 four publications have joined the audit and four opted out.

Like for like sales show that they are down 33,000 or 7% on 2008 and 53,000 or 11% on 2007.

Of the papers under the audit there are still 435,000 papers sold every week and possibly close to that again for papers not in the audit.

Regional newspapers are still hugely popular – not in the larger cities and towns who would be better serviced with television as perhaps a more savvy radio medium. Dublin does not ‘do’ regional’ or perhaps it should be better termed ‘local’ press.

Local papers have a massive commodity that they don’t exploit – local news. A quick look at this post and some of their websites will confirm that point.

In terms of selling themselves, not to the local community, but to a wider press buying public, they border on useless.

A case in point are some papers, on the list below, who make the decision to have their sales independently verified, go through the whole ABC audit process, have those figures published through the ABC – and then don’t put them on their own web site – a hanging offence. Although its marginally better than one local paper website who, in 2010, use their ABC for Jan June 2007 as a “selling point” on the site.   

Taking 2009 on 2008 the biggest fallers are the Limerick Leader and Western People.

One issue borne out again in these figures is that, geographically, the Leinster local papers suffered higher casualty rates than other regions. But more specifically papers with a closer proximity to the Capital.

Is it due to a lack of movement with less travel due to unemployment? Foreign Nationals returning home (difficult to suggest that they latched ion to local papers on their arrival)? Is the area around Dublin harder hit economically?

One interesting point: We researched some retail aspects of the Local press about two years back and one issue was very apparent. As rural shops closed and they were not replaced, those previous sales of local papers were, in the main, lost for good. With a spate of retail closures in the last two years, this has to be having an adverse effect on local press sales.     

Local papers have a lot to bring and give to a local community. If they could have a cohesive platform and a single lobbying voice they might get a bigger slice of the advertising pie.  

Paper 2007 2008 2009 2009/2008 2009/2007
Bray People  5,736 4,848 4,627 -221 -1,109
Carlow People  4,686 4,551 4,786 235 100
Clare Champion  19,539 19,046 17,969 -1,077 -1,570
Connacht Sentinel  5,757 5,349 -408
Connacht Tribune  24,598 23,279 -1,319
Donegal Democrat (Thurs)  13,060 12,217 11,120 -1,097 -1,940
Donegal Democrat (Tues)  9,580 8,467 8,009 -458 -1,571
Donegal News Friday  12,091 11,786 11,465 -321 -626
Donegal News Monday 3,734 3,874 3,833 -41 99
Donegal on Sunday  3,894 3,797 -97 3,797
Donegal Post  5,191 4,810 4,085 -725 -1,106
Drogheda Independent  10,328 9,428 8,067 -1,361 -2,261
Dundalk Democrat  6,496 6,288 -208 6,288
Enniscorthy Guardian  7,521 7,366 7,104 -262 -417
Fingal Independent  5,302 5,106 4,343 -763 -959
Foinse  4,152 3,746 -4,152
Galway Advertiser (free) 32,194 34,795 30,090 2,601 -2,104
Galway Independent  (free) 24,610 24,643 25,590 33 0%
Inish Times  6,224 5,942 5,399 -543 -825
Kilkenny Advertiser  7,997
Kilkenny People  16,113 15,217 14,458 -759 -1,655
Leinster & Offaly Express  15,318 15,190 14,131 -1,059 -1,187
Leinster Leader 12,100 10,775 9,238 -1,537 -2,862
Leitrim Observer  8,386 8,013 8,038 25 -348
Leitrim Post  4,923
Limerick Leader (Weekend)  21,619 20,714 17,921 -2,793 -3,698
Limerick Post 15,113 15,073 17,450 -40 2,337
Longford Leader  9,485 8,828 8,527 -301 -958
Meath Chronicle  16,010 14,651 12,704 -1,947 -3,306
Midland Tribune  10,105 9,914 -10,105
Mullingar Advertiser 5,701  
Munster Express  10,849 9,329 7,520 -1,809 -3,329
Nationalist & Munster Ad 14,106 13,328 12,063 -1,265 -2,043
Nenagh Guardian  8,134 8,051 7,817 -234 -317
New Ross Standard  6,384 6,156 5,955 -201 -429
Roscommon Herald  9,185 8,737 8,410 -327 -775
Sligo Champion  12,108 11,353 10,307 -1,046 -1,801
Sligo Weekender  7,904 7,509 6,491 -1,018 -1,413
The Anglo Celt  14,713 13,783 13,305 -478 -1,408
The Argus  11,507 10,794 9,948 -846 -1,559
The Clare People  12,250 12,154 10,231 -1,923 -2,019
The Corkman  8,247 7,891 7,527 -364 -720
The Echo (Tallaght ) 9,741 7,829 -9,741
The Kerryman  26,392 24,451 23,137 -1,314 -3,255
The Nationalist  14,696
The Mayo News  10,569 10,229 -10,569
The Tuam Herald  9,514 9,419 9,215 -204 -299
Tipperary Star  9,223 9,104 8,335 -769 -888
Western People  19,289 18,242 16,271 -1,971 -3,018
Westmeath Examiner  9,273 8,519 7,010 -1,509 -2,263
Wexford People  12,863 12,587 12,094 -493 -769
Wicklow People  13,122 12,158 11,191 -967 -1,931
Totals 553,925 511,013 507,811  
   
Like for Like 489,003 468,905 435,781 -33,124 -53,222
Change on 2009 -7% -11%