Where are they now? It seems like as good a time as any to have a retrospective look at the market since the beginning of the lockdown, concentrating on how newspaper sales have been hit. This has to be viewed with one large caveat in the News UK have not reported since February – as they are allowed to do under the Covid reporting rules. It means that some 34% of the morning market is not represented (has not been reported) in the analysis and a hefty 52% in the Sunday market is a mystery as well, but it
Not all of the numbers are in for June and as soon as they are, the table will be updated.
The ABC have given publishers a bit of latitude during the pandemic and there is no definitive release date. So, since Monday two publishers have released their data (partially anyway). Reach Plc have released for the Star and Express titles, but not for the Mirror or People. The only way to tackle this is, as then are released, I’ll update the table below and include the release date.
It was inevitable after IN&M abandoned the ABC that there would be followers. The Irish Times are no longer registered with the ABC bring with its stablemates The Examiner and Evening Echo. So, the only titles still registered now are papers published here with sister titles in the UK or papers printed in the UK and shipped into the Republic on a nightly basis (see table). So, the metric of ‘ABC audited’ is seen as being of no value to many of the publications here. In the UK The Telegraph pulled out of the ABC audit at the start
This is a difficult one to pick through, given the lockdown and ever-changing rules from the ABC. First off, bright and early this morning, the ABC released ‘new reporting standards’ for newsbrands. As of today, 21st May: brands and opt for public or private reporting they can use additional metrics above the mandatory ones there will no longer be a monthly newsbrand report If you read the detail of the new reporting standard it hands the keys of the henhouse over to the foxes! Most of the publications produced a cert for April. The date range was altered last
The apocalyptic landscape I thought I’d be painting for the March ABC’s didn’t materialise! The small change in the reporting period (see below) and the Cheltenham festival do seem to have worked in the favour of the newspaper market showing a monthly increase of 2% but a decline of 7% on March 2019. Ten of the publications are showing and increase on the previous month and the morning tabloids taking the lion’s share of those increases. None of the publications reported an exception in the March reporting period. The ABC reporting for March: The reporting period is 2nd March
The ABC’s for February have been published. Looking at the big picture, the market is down 13%. In the morning by 14% and the Sunday by 10%. But, given the extraordinary circumstances we find ourselves, I really believe that the reporting for March, due on the 14th of April will show a collapse in newspaper circulation in Ireland. If, and it’s a big if, the UK goes into lockdown how will the papers be produced, printed and distributed? In Italy, some of the publishers are arguing strongly that newsstands should be on the list of essential services during any
The ABC Island of Ireland report was released today, without the previous fanfare due to a much-depleted field. IN+M decided to withdraw from the ABC certification in August of 2019 and, as they accounted for a large share in the two markets (53% of the Sunday and 43% of the Morning market), we really don’t get a complete view with the recently released figures. Just a quick point on the ABC. In August of 2019 we learned, on the morning of the supposed release of their data, that IN&M had decided that they were not going to use the
The ABC for January 2020 were released. It shows that the year on year for the Morning titles dropped by 14% and the Sunday down 15%. Of note is the absence of a cert for both the Daily and Sunday Telegraph. They decided last month that they were no longer going to audit their newspaper circulation. The ‘total market’ reflects this and their figures from previous periods do not form part of the total market.
The final numbers of 2019 were released today allowing us to see where the market (well those papers who are audited) ended up last year. Just a courtesy look at December: It wasn’t as bad as it could have been, as December can go either way for the papers. But sales were down only 1% on the previous month – but -16% on the year, more on that later. In short, the month threw up no real surprises. As the figures for the twelve months are available for the audited titles we can see where this portion of the
November ABC’s were released and as per October, nothing much has changed, bar the 10%+ decline in sales over the year.The only really notable events were the collapse of the Sunday Mail circulation diving 26% to 532 copies and a 1% increase in the sale of the Sunday Times. Market down 1% on the month and 12% on the year.
Another day… October ABC’s showing no signs of bucking the trend and if you look at the accompanying graphic, you’ll see that the trend is far from reversing. The tabloids are down 4% on the month and 12% on the year with the Daily Star taking the biggest hit of just shy of 2,000. Elsewhere in the market the movements are small and there’s nothing shocking to report. The People however did manage a 8% month on month increase but I doubt it’s enough to save it’s hide in this market. Market back 3% on the month and 12%
As I suspected last month, the fickle nature of the sports reader kicked in this month with the three morning tabloids falling nearly 5,000 collectively. The lure of the start of the soccer season was short-lived – shorter even than the tenure of Ole Gunnar Solskjær in the premier league. The Sun took the biggest hit dropping 2,000 on August or 4% on the month while the Mirror fell 1,500 and the Daily Star was back 1,000. In the Sundays, there was some cheer for the Mail on Sunday which added 1,200 and the Sunday Times managed a three-digit
After the relative excitement of last months abandonment of the ABC’s by IN&M, the August monthly figures are a bit of a damp squib. However, August always brings one certainty – a short-lived revival of the tabloid market on the back of the UK soccer season kicking into life again. Collectively the red tops added 4% month on month or short of 5,000. In comparison to August of 2018, it’s an improvement in both actual numbers and percentage (4,200 and 3%). The Sun on Sunday was also a benefactor of the soccer season adding 2,000. The Sunday Times had
Independent News and Media decided to ‘to resign its titles from ABC membership’ and therefore will not be reporting ABC figure for the current Island of Ireland report. Given that 22% of the reporting numbers in the daily market have vanished and 53% of the reporting numbers of the Sunday market have also disappeared it makes this report a ‘busted flush’. But in the spirit of stoicism (and as a hat tip to those publications that value audited metrics) I’ll press on with what remnants of data I have to hand. Overall year on year comparatives are meaningless at