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Panpa Bulletin : May 2011
Entertain readers with these hilarious comic strips for all ages and demographics. Freecall 1800 652 284 | firstname.lastname@example.org www.auspacmedia.com.au Call Margret for ideas Phone: 07 5553 3200 Em ail: margretp@auspacmedia .c om.au INCREASE CIRCULATION! Insanity Streak Swamp Against the Grain Beyond the Black Stump Kitty Creek Muddy River Clancy It’s a Jungle Out There www.panpa.org.au REBECCA LEAVER discovers how Sunday newspapers are changing EVEN hardware stores are compet- itors in the new Sunday newspaper market with the fiercest battle now not just between titles but convinc- ing consumers to carve out some time in their busy weekend for reading. "Even Bunnings is a competitor," says Neil Breen, editor of the News Ltd-owned Sunday Telegraph. "Have you been to a Bunnings on the weekend? You can't get into the joint, it's packed. Those things have just grown a life of their own. "People's lives change so quickly." For these big-circulation papers this lifestyle shift comes parallel to falls in copy sales. In Australia -- a country where these lifestyle changes are blindingly obvious -- the overall Sunday news- paper market slid 2.9 percent when comparing the most recent year-on- year quarterly figures released by the Audit Bureau of Circulation. Yet the market remains huge by comparison with other media in Australia and New Zealand. "If you look at the Sydney market, there is still a combined 1.1 million papers sold every Sunday," contin- ues Mr Breen. "That's massive." The New Zealand Herald on Sun- day is one of only a handful of papers -- along with its daily flagship -- that has managed to grow circulation, albeit marginally, in recent times. "There is no doubt [the Herald on Sunday] is still a relatively new product so it is natural that there is going to be some growth," says edi- tor Bryce Johns. All Sunday editors agree they must continually keep track of so- ciety trends and reader behaviour on weekends, or risk becoming ir- relevant. The most surprising factors can influence the sale of a Sunday news- paper. Many copies are sold at super- markets and petrol stations. In tough economic times, families tend to visit these sales channels less regularly. Rising petrol prices also translate into fewer newspaper sales on week- ends -- and there is very little anyone can do about that except to explore alternative channels that make the product available at more conven- ient times and locations. Keeping up with such dynamics is key to the editor's role, and the sur- rounding management. "It is one of the biggest chal- lenges," says Sunday Herald Sun editor Damon Johnston, based in Melbourne. "Australians are now busier than ever; Saturday is just another day of the week. And Sunday, although it is still the day of rest for many families, are busier than they have ever been. "The heart of our challenge is to remain relevant and help the reader save time by having lots of 'news you can use' -- advice on how to settle problems, how to resolve financial issues, where to get the best deals, housing prices and so on." Editor of the Sydney-based Sun- Herald, Rick Feneley, believes it is no longer true to say the weekend is when people have time to read. That window, he says, has diminished. On Saturdays, he says, parents spend most of their time and energy frantically running around after kids' sport matches, or going to Bunnings for home-improvement projects. "We know people spend slightly more time than on Saturday reading Sunday papers," says Mr Feneley. "So one of my conscious choices is to give people a bit more to read." Mr Feneley is steering the Fairfax Media paper towards longer-form journalism. "Traditionally (in Australia) the Sunday papers have been a lot lighter," he says. Since he took over the role a few months ago, the Sun-Herald has re- duced the ad commitment on news pages to allow the editor to run longer articles. These are "not 4000-word pieces but 1,200," says Mr Feneley, "which the reader can tolerate if it's compel- ling writing". The yardstick for a successful Sun- day newspaper, according to editors interviewed, is a combination of strong circulation, commercially competitive readership data and in- teraction with readers either online or in print. Future of the 10 | MAY 2011 | The PANPA Bulletin Even (hardware store) Bunnings is a competitor " " Neil Breen SPH profits still on rise SINGAPORE Press Holdings has reported significant profits in its second quarter results with increases in all its business segments. Group operating revenue rose by S$20.5 million -- a 7.7 percent jump from the corresponding quarter last year. Chief executive Alan Chan said SPH had benefited from strong regional ac- tivities and the continuing recovery of the Singapore economy. "The group's print advertisement revenue is expected to move in tandem with the performance of the Singapore domestic economy. "Our two property assets, Clementi Mall and Paragon, are both fully leased and are expected to contribute a steady stream of rental income to the group," he said. Revenue from the print arm of the business has remained strong at S$234.3 million -- an S$11.6 million in- crease compared to Q2 last year. Print ad revenue alone increased by S$10.9 million, a 6.6 percent boost due to a strong show of display and recruit- ment ads this quarter. Circulation revenue remained stable at S$50.3 million year-on-year. Newsprint price hikes ate into profit margins by S$3.1 million -- a 15.3 per- cent increase on last year. The directors have promised an in- terim dividend of 7 cents per share to be paid in May.