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3 Reasons Why Your Print Ads Aren't Working and How to fix it



Some say print is dead, however, newspapers and magazines still have a loyal subscriber base that habitually read print content on a daily basis.  

Here are some statistics of the newspaper industry:

Revenue of the U.S. newspaper publishing industry $26.72bn                                                                         Details →                                
Estimated expenses of U.S. newspaper publishers $30.39bn                                                                         Details →                                
Number of daily newspapers in the U.S. 1.382                                                                         Details →                                
Advertising SpendingValuesStatistic
Newspaper advertising spending in the U.S. $17.1bn                                                                         Details →                                
Digital advertising revenue of U.S. newspapers $3.42bn                                                                         Details →                                
Classified advertising revenue of U.S. newspapers $4.63bn                                                                         Details →                                
Newspaper advertising spending of Macy's $400.2m                                                                         Details →                                
Daily time spent reading newspapers per capita in the U.S. 21.7min                                                                         Details →                                
Ø Daily print and website audience of U.S. newspapers 98,645,784                                                                         Details →                                
Average amount of money spent on newspapers in the U.S. $44.41                                                                         Details →                                
Market LeadersValuesStatistic
Total weekday circulation of Gannet Company 4,859,360                                                                         Details →                                
Number of daily newspapers published by Digital First Media 97                                                                         Details →                                
Circulation of USA Today 4,139,380                                                                         Details →                                
Average circulation of the New York Times 2,100,893                                                                         Details →                                


Although newspaper companies have seen better days, the industry is transforming itself to adapt to the environment by offering new ways to get the news and more services for advertisers besides traditional print advertising such as digital and agency services.  

The new age of content forced newspapers to have 2 different target audiences:  

1. Loyal print readers who are usually a more mature persona.  These readers have been habitually reading the newspaper for years and is part of their daily routine to receive local news content.  They prefer to hold the actual paper and have the experience of reading someting tangible.  

2. The new generation who get their content from digital and social media sources.  This persona uses technology to get as much information as fast as possible to adapt to their busy on-the-go lifestyle.    

This blog focuses on improving ad response from the traditional audience base of newspapers.  The mature audience reading newspapers have high diposable incomes and still offers a great opportunity to reach for products and services that they need.       

5 Reasons Why Your Print Ads Are Not Working and Hot to Fix it:

1. Reason #1 Your print ad is not conspicuouz enough to stand out of the page of other content.  

If your ad doesn't get a reader's attention within 3 seconds, it is more likely to be ignored.  If the reader quickly scans past it and the ad is not seen, you lose the opportunity to sell your product or services.  Most ads are either to cluttered with too much content and images.  Focusing on a clear and simple headline that offers a benefit or a solution to your prospect's problem can help your ad get more attention.  Headlines account for 60%-80% of the ads success.  David Ogilvy’s 7 Tips for Writing Copy That Sells.  


2. Reason #2 The offer is not interesting enough to your target audience.

If your ad is not exiting enough to cause the reader to get excited and cause them to respond immediately then you might want to revisit your offer strategy.  Great offers usually get people to act immediately or think about acting even if they aren't currently in the market for the product or services.  How to Create Marketing Offers That Don't Fall Flat.  Below are 7 things the make an offer irresistible. 

  1. The offer must give the prospect something of value they desire and want now.  Targeting the bottom funnel of people ready to buy now or people that are in the middle funnel researching options.
  2. The offer has to require little or no effort to obtain. You have to make it easy for them to act.
  3. The offer requires little or no outlay of money up front.  Free always sells. Giving them something for free now to become a future clients is usually a good strategy.  
  4. The offer has to give lots of value and upside benefits that outweigh not acting to receive the offer.  
  5. The offer should sell by itself and involves no sales pressure.
  6. The offer should not involve any risk, gamble, or downside.
  7. The offer is unquestionably a "no brainer" decision. 


3. Reason #3 The ad creative or image doesn't speak or match to the prospect's self image.

Readers identify themselves with the product, service, or business.  If the ad's image shoots too high or too low so the prospect can't identify themeselves with the creative.  We can learn from facebook on how images can get good responses on ads.  This can be used for your print ads as well.  

10 Examples of Facebook Ads That Actually Work (And Why)



Print ads have been a big part of the advertising industry's roots should still be part of an integrated campaign strategy for businesses to reach certain audiences.  Although there are new personas that can be reached through new media, local print readers still offer great opportunities for selling products and services.     

 Get the details!


Posted by Izzy Gregorio Date: Jan 6, 2015 12:40:00 PM
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