The three main rules for starting a business are simple, easy to remember, and roll off the tongue like an eloquent Englishman ordering his favorite tea:
Location, location, location.
Newspaper ads, I’m here to say, my dear friends, follow the exact same rules.
Sure, a snappy logo with powerful brand recall can give your business a boost. Creative layouts and designs are important, as well, and contribute their own strengths to creating advertisements. But at the very core of advertising, we’re going for bigger numbers, not an obscure blog article about the “10 Most Creative Ads You’ve Never Seen.”
Your advertisement needs prime real estate. It needs to sit on the corner of 12th and Broadway, not simply be that dive coffee shop someone told you was kind-of-cool over on the edge of town.
Print, by far, is your best solution to the effective real estate question. Why? Not only do you have a large audience, but that audience wants to see you. They want to know what you have to offer.
Newspaper ads by the numbers, starting with your audience base
According to a 2013 Nielson National Cross-Media Engagement Study, 78 pecent of all adults in the U.S. read newspapers or visit their online websites on a weekly basis. That’s 158 million adults in the U.S. and 144 million of those are loyal weekly print newspaper readers. Most adults in that population are affluent, where 75 percent of all adults with a college degree read a newspaper, and 73 percent of adults with a household income greater than $100,000 per year read printed newspapers.
Not only is your audience chock-full of money, many of them purchase newspapers with the intent of spending that money. 62 percent of consumers grab a newspaper first when planning to shop and make purchase decisions, beating online sources by 5 percent and television sources by 17 percent. Additionally, for Black Friday, arguably the most important shopping day for all outlets, whether brick-and-mortar or online, 63 percent of consumers search for newspaper ads first when hunting for deals.
But why newspapers? Surely this is a fluke, or just an outdated ritual that will soon pass as businesses become more tech-savvy, right? Aren’t newspapers dying off, or something like that?
Actually, it’s a matter of trust.
According to the same Nielson study, consumers trust newspapers more than any other medium. Consumers also agreed that newspapers were the most inspiring source of information, trumping both television and social media, as well as believing that newspapers were the greatest source of making people’s lives better.
Newspapers, consumers agree, have the public’s best interest in mind, and that trust translates to action. Thus, using newspaper ads as part of your marketing mix is still a great option for many advertisers.
Newspapers were voted to be the most engaging media outlet, connecting with their audience far better than television, radio and social media outlets. Nearly half of all readers said that they usually noticed the advertising placed in printed newspapers (as opposed to “flash in the pan” and “voted most annoying” television and online advertisements). From that number, a hefty 35 percent of readers found that they were highly motivated to purchase after seeing newspaper advertisements.
Let me reiterate that statistic: one out of every three readers are highly motivated to make a purchase based on newspaper advertisements.
Newspapers: the most trusted, most engaging media outlet. Pair that with their large wealthy audience base, and you’ve got the setup for prime advertisement real-estate.