Thursday, 7 June 2012

Online Newspapers more popular now than the printed version in Ireland. Good news for publishers.

Just as if you didn't know, online newspapers are now more popular that offline ones in Ireland, according to a no more credible source than the BBC. 

We all knew it was coming and had identified the trend, but the fact that online has overtaken offline already, is staggering. This was conducted in February 2012 so it's really current.

Not that it affects the publishers in one way, since they all have and own, excellent online sites but it indicates where Ad money should go. So whether the ads are placed online or offline doesn't really matter to a publisher except this - they've more inventory, more pages to sell online and the ability to change them regularly throughout a day.

If there's more readers online, there's going to be more advetising online.

The research shows that 60% of newspaper websites are more popular for news than their online equivalent (57%). Although TV is still the main source for news (breaking news + sports) at 63%, which is not surprising given that people want video of news and online publishers don't have it - yet. But they're getting there and they'll then have the power to compete with TV broadcasters when they do. One exciting space to be in for print publishers at last.

Whilst remains the top site in this survey, one must think, but for how long? 

BBC ( comes in an amazing second - given that their news is not local. But it's also the most favoured news source on Twitter (with The Huff Post 2nd and The Telegraph 3rd).

Print and TV will become blurred once publishers get vod of news online and that will give them a significant opportunity. A light for print publishers online which is absolutely terrific, given that they've stuck it out long enough. Good for them.

Most people are viewing news on mobile (54%) a couple of times a day and 42% claim to be checking regularly. Something which isn't done offline, because once you read a paper, well, you've read it and print news is static, online is dynamic (it changes throughout the day).  

Interesting too that 64% said they owned a smartphone and 50% a games console with nearly 90% having good internet access.

“Today’s results are an indication that news consumption in Ireland is in robust health, and that consumers appreciate the traditional print outlets for news as well as the new digital platforms,” said Isla McLeod, digital sales director of EMEA for BBC Worldwide. “These are welcome results for advertisers looking to reach this highly desirable audience.”

And how right that is. 

I note Kevin Foley of Adforce comments (who look after the BBC inventory) about the need for advertisers to adopt change and get more online. I don't think it's any secret that already the TV3 player is sold out for pre-rolls (ads running before the content). And he's right - the model has now officially changed.

All round this is good news for online.
Good for online publishers, good for online Sales houses, good for Clients.

It's simply a change from one medium to the other but making advertising more results driven.

Will Agencies shift their budgets?

Yes, in time. We move too slowly to adopt change but this research is going to make a difference.

More people are choosing online for news now rather than in the traditional way. Advertising follows audience. Advertisers will want to know why it's not being recommended by their Agencies. So they'll have to.