Saturday, October 12, 2013

Newspaper sales dive enters 8th straight year

Ken Doctor reporting:
As digital advertising sales soared 18% to a record high in the first six months of this year, the revenues of the publicly traded newspaper companies slipped an average of 5.5% to enter an eighth year of unabated decline.

Paced by a 145% increase in mobile ad sales, digital volume hit a half-year high of $20.1 billion, according to the Interactive Advertising Bureau, a trade organization. The sum is nearly equal to the $22.3 billion in sales collectively produced by the nation’s 1,382 dailies for all of 2012.

Assuming digital and newspaper sales pursue the same trajectory for the balance of the year, then digital revenues for the full 12 months will be more than twice the revenues produced by newspapers, whose aggregate sales hit a record $49.4 billion as recently as 2005. In a measure of the dizzying pace at which the marketplace is shifting, interactive revenues were $12.5 billion in 2005.

As illustrated in the chart below, the growth in digital advertising is taking oxygen from the other legacy media, too.

While broadcast television sales grew by 6.4% in the first half of the year, magazine sales gained 0.4% and radio sales were flat. The data were provided by their respective industry associations, the Television Bureau of Advertising, the Association of Magazine Media and the Radio Advertising Bureau.

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