Tuesday, January 28th, 2014 - Roy Morgan Research

7 in 10 capital city newspaper readers include community newspapers in their week’s newsprint mix—with over 1 in 5 of them now reading only their local newspaper, the latest research from Roy Morgan shows.

Over six million people in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth read their community newspaper in an average week in the two years to September 2013—that’s the majority (52%) of all capital city residents aged 14+.

57% of all Adelaideans read a community newspaper, just ahead of Sydney and Perth (54% each), Melbourne (50%) and Brisbane (48%).

But Sydney leads with the highest proportion of local-only readers: 764,000 (20%) Sydneysiders read their community newspaper but not a metro paper—almost 40,000 more than vice versa—with another 1 in 3 Sydneysiders (1.3 million) reading both.

Conversely, while Adelaide has the lowest proportion of residents who read only community newspapers (13%), it has the greatest crossover, with 44% of Adelaide reading both local and metro papers in an average week.

Capital City Readership of Community and Metro Newspapers

Source: Roy Morgan Single Source (Australia), October 2011 – September 2013. Australians 14+ in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide or Perth, n = 58,719

Overall, 74% of capital city residents can be reached in an average week via a metro or community newspaper, and 70% of those include a community newspaper in the mix.

Michele Levine, CEO, Roy Morgan Research, says:

“With all the recent debate over declining newsprint readership, it’s vital to remember two things: print newspapers remain an effective avenue for many types of communication, whether editorial journalism or commercial advertising; community newspapers continue to reach the majority of capital city residents overall—and 70% of newspaper readers.

“There is obviously a strong correlation between the two newspaper categories, local and metro. Readers of one sort are naturally more inclined to be readers of the other, so there is a great deal of crossover. However, the fact that 38% of Australia’s mainland capital city residents only read one or the other indicates there may be some important differences between the audiences, which can be better understood only through more in-depth demographic, behavioural and attitudinal segmentation analysis.

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Roy Morgan Research


Roy Morgan Research is Australia’s best known and longest established market research and public opinion survey company. Roy Morgan Single Source is thorough, accurate, and provides comprehensive, directly applicable information about current and future customers. It is unique in that it directs all the questions to each individual from a base survey sample of around 55,000 interviews in Australia and 15,000 interviews in New Zealand annually - the largest Single Source databases in the world. The questions asked relate to lifestyle and attitudes, media consumption habits (including TV, radio, newspapers, magazines, cinema, catalogues, pay TV and the Internet), brand and product usage, purchase intentions, retail visitations, service provider preferences, financial information and recreation and leisure activities. This lead product is supported by a nationally networked, consultancy-orientated market research capability.
Shaun Ellis
P: 03 9224 5332
W: www.roymorgan.com

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