Irish Readership Figures 2009

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And finally…. something positive on the print front.  The JNRR (Joint National Readership Research) was released and it showed that, contrary to all the signs at the news stand, readership of newspapers went up year on year.

It covered the period July 2008 to June 2009 (and a comparison is drawn from the same period twelve months earlier). Readership of any newspaper, morning, evening, Sunday, or weekly was marginally up year on year with the morning showing the biggest gains – up around 7%.

There were big increases for the Irish Independent and, certainly in percentage terms, for the Irish Times as well. Both papers will be buoyed as they reached readership numbers that they haven’t seen in a several years. The Sundays showed a decline, but you have to factor that the “any Sunday” answer is “any Sunday in the survey”. As the Sunday People pulled out of the survey this year it is slightly imbalanced. I’d suggest that the like for like readership is up on the year. A little like the circulation numbers, some of the tabloids seem to have taken a knock in the 12 months namely the Sunday World and News of the World.

The Sunday Star turned in remarkably good numbers and now has its highest readership since its inception. Contrary to their circulation numbers weekly readership was up marginally and the survey shows that the weekly market is solidly outside the two main cities with 63% of the population outside Dublin and Cork there reading a weekly. A reach of 1.5 million people a weekly is a huge number, but I don’t feel that its reflected in advertising or that the weeklies as a body/whole shout about that reach enough.

Maybe if there was less rivalry and a more cohesive approach to marketing their product as a medium they would see more fat on the bottom line. I like the approach in the UK through the newspaper society, not the most glamorous of sites, but it certainly gets the message across.

Title2009/2008 2008/2007 +/- ‘000
AIR – Any newspaper310087.8%303686.2%64
Morning Titles
Irish Independent55515.7%50814.4%47
The Irish Times36410.3%3199.0%45
Irish Examiner2106.0%2386.8%-28
Irish Daily Star46213.1%46013.1%2
Irish Daily Mirror2045.8%2196.2%-15
Irish Sun 3118.8%2898.2%22
Irish Daily Mail1464.1%1313.7%15
Any Daily2,06258.4%1,96755.8%95
Any Morning1,93254.7%1,80151.1%131
Evening Titles
Evening Herald3219.1%3179.0%4
Free Titles
Herald AM1203.4%
Any Free Morning1544.3%
Sunday Titles
Sunday Independent100328.4%97227.6%31
Sunday Tribune1724.9%1775.0%-5
Sunday World88325.0%93226.4%-49
Sunday Business Post1624.6%1624.6%0
Sunday Times37110.5%3439.7%28
Irish News of the World52915.0%56616.1%-37
Irish Sunday Mirror1373.9%1464.1%-9
Irish People782.2%
Irish Mail on Sunday2958.3%2446.9%51
Irish Daily Star Sunday2326.6%1785.0%54
Any Sunday252171.4%252971.8%-8
Irish Farmers Journal2406.8%2206.2%20
Any RNAI /Mediaforce 157944.7%152743.3%52
Any RNAI /Mediaforce EX Dub/Cork 150463.2%147962.9%25

The magazine end of the business is a particularly interesting one showing the readership of each titles (expensive) magazine supplements.

Magazines 2009/2008 2008/2007 +/- ‘000
RTE Guide2948.3%2938.3%1
Hot Press290.8%341.0%-5
Daily Magazines
Weekend I.I54015.3%50914.4%3197%
Day and Night I.I2316.5%1544.4%7742%
Health and Living I.I3179.0%2015.7%11657%
Property Plus I.I2467.0%44%
Irish Times Mag.I.T3399.6%3179.0%2293%
The Ticket I.T2316.5%2346.7%-363%
Health Plus I.T2366.7%65%
Star Chic STAR3309.3%37210.6%-4271%
TV Mag SUN3379.5%3088.7%29108%
You I.D.M1454.1%1293.7%1699%
HQ E H.1504.2%2156.1%-6547%
Sunday Newspapers
Life SI68019.2%67619.2%468%
Tribune MagazineS Trib1223.5%1022.9%2071%
Amen ST Su1083.1%1032.9%547%
Sunday Times Mag.S Times2717.7%2517.1%2073%
Culture S Times2477.0%2436.9%467%
Style S Times2156.1%2146.1%158%
Fabulous NOW3078.7%36310.3%-5658%
TV Week IMOS2045.8%1664.7%3869%
Sunday World Mag.SWO61117.3%63518.0%-2469%
Agenda SBP912.6%56%
Irish Country Living IFJ1243.5%1253.6%-152%

In general the supplemtreareadership is up and the Irish Independent ‘Health and Living’ supplement takes the prize as it made some serious gains adding nearly 60% on to its readership in the twelve months. The RTE guide stayed put which is understandable when every papers now offers seven-day listings. I wonder where it would be if it didn’t have the benefit of the broadcasters airtime and all that free publicity it receives– would it exist at all? Two curious case of kind of ‘voyeurism’!  Firstly there is Property Plus – with 246,000 people reading it each week. When the property market is stationary, if not in reverse, its a inordinately high figure – people looking to spring into action or simply lamenting value they once had?  The second is the TV Mag in The Sun which shows that it has a higher readership than the main paper. The weekend magazines of the two morning titles have a near 100% penetration of the core audience, but I suppose a magazine that is kicking around the house for a week is bound to. The Ticket and Night and Day would have a narrower appeal but the Irish Times looks like it wins that particular race. Healthy readership all round – pity there’s not an advertising rex to be had!

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