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Newspaper Advertising Dialed Back to 1950.

September 17, 2012

Today’s chart shows the growth and collapse of newspaper advertising in the United States from 1950 to 2012. All numbers are adjusted for inflation.

Two weeks ago, the Newspaper Association of America published its quarterly advertising report. As reported earlier, the results were not good. In fact it was the worst quarter in thirty years when accounting for inflation.

Looking at annual numbers, the outlook is even more dramatic: if nothing extraordinary happens in the last few months of this year, 2012 will be the worst year for American newspapers since 1950. Professor Mark J. Perry of the University of Michigan estimates print advertising revenues of $19 billion this year. Taking inflation into account that is a 71 percent decline from the peak in 2000 and below the level of 1950!

You don’t have to look far to understand the disintermediation of those advertising dollars. Some papers are just now reacting to the digital age and experimenting with digital content, reduced physical paper runs and consolidation. In the end, the entire news industry will be changed and resemble nothing of its previous self.





From → business, Strategy

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