Newspaper Advertising Still Primary Shopping Information Source

Newspaper advertising is the leading advertising medium cited by consumers in planning, shopping and making purchasing decisions, according to data from a Frank N. Magid Associates survey of 2,500 adults. The findings, announced today by the Newspaper Association of America, paint a strong picture of the unmatched value newspaper advertising continues to deliver in today’s media landscape. “This important new research reaffirms the power of newspaper advertising to engage consumers and drive them to take action,” said NAA President and CEO John Sturm. “More than all other media, adults continue to turn to newspapers to inform shopping decisions that lead to purchases. They are an opt-in media in an opt-out world, making newspaper advertising an ideal and effective choice for advertisers who want to reach consumers ready to shop and spend.”

The study, titled “How America Shops and Spends 2011,” is the latest in an ongoing series of NAA research investigating consumer shopping habits and the influence media has on shopping today. Highlights include:

• Four-in-five adults (79 percent) of those surveyed said they “took action” as a result of newspaper advertising in
the past month, including:
• Clipping a coupon (54 percent)
• Buying something (46 percent)
• Visiting Web sites to learn more (37 percent)
• Trying something for the first time (20 percent)
• More than half of all adults (52 percent) identify newspapers as the medium they use to help plan shopping or make purchase decisions
• Almost three-fourths (72 percent) of all adults regularly or occasionally read newspaper preprints; For Sunday inserts, this figure increases to 90 percent of all adults. Over the course of 30 days, 8 in 10 adults (79 percent) acted on newspaper preprint advertising.

Nearly four-in-10 (38 percent) adults who identify themselves as newspaper “non-readers” recalled other forms of engagement in the past week, including checking sales in local stores, clipping coupons, comparing prices, checking movie or TV listings and classified, and also various forms of editorial content. Altogether, this unofficial exposure overall adds another 13 percentage points to the newspapers’ weekly reach among all adults and so may be considered as a bonus beyond the “normal” audience.

• Advertising on local newspaper websites ranked second (behind only emailed store or product information) among online options for advertising sources, beating general interest websites, or portals, paid ads that appear on the right side of the search engine screens, ads on social network pages, and ads on mobile devices

Newspapers also lead other media on the following advertising benefits:
• Checking for your regular shopping (41 percent).
• Having advertising that you consult from stores that you regularly shop (36 percent)
• Being the most believable and trustworthy (36 percent).
• Being the best for bringing sales to your attention (38 percent)
• Being the most valuable in planning your shopping (36 percent)
• Preferred for receiving advertising information (36 percent)
• You look forward to this kind of advertising (30 percent)

The data also reveals that other media trailed well behind newspapers as the primary medium for checking advertising. The closest competitor – the Internet – trailed newspapers by seven percentage points (35 percent vs. 28 percent). Direct mail only mustered a 12 percent response in the survey, and television was cited by only nine percent of respondents. The numbers for other media trail off from that point.

Primary Medium for Checking Advertising, 2011
Newspapers – 35%
Internet – 28%
Ads received in the mail (Direct mail) – 12%
Television – 9%
Catalogs – 7%
Magazines – 3%
Radio – 1%
None of these – 5%

Frank N. Magid Associates, based in Minneapolis, conducted this phone and Internet survey of 2,502 adults for the Newspaper Association of America. – NAA

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Dan Gartlan
Dan Gartlan helps companies of all kinds drive their business initiatives and achieve their goals with strategic marketing programs that deliver results. As President of Stevens & Tate Marketing, he has over 20 years experience across various industries, and continues to share his expertise to build brands nationwide.