With the release of NRS Quarter 3 2011 data today, the Survey is reporting some changes in both the newspaper and magazine market. It may just be a coincidence, but the largest Sunday newspaper and the largest magazine reported last quarter (News of the World with 7.3 million readers and Sky Magazine with 7.9 million) have both closed. This quarter, the largest Sunday newspaper is The Mail on Sunday (4.8 million) and the largest magazine is Tesco Magazine (6.6 million).
Following the closure of the News of the World, last quarter we were wondering what would happen to the Sunday newspaper market and particularly whether readers of the News of the World would switch to another paper. All midmarket and popular Sunday newspapers have higher readership in July-September compared to April-June, although only the increases for Sunday Mirror (+21%) and Daily Star Sunday (+32%) are ‘real’ (statistically speaking). Increases in readership are accompanied by increases in circulation (as reported by ABC), although as is often the case the changes in readership are of a different magnitude to those in circulation, with circulation increases of +70% for Sunday Mirror and +143% for Daily Star Sunday.
It’s not, however, all about closures this release, as the NRS is publishing its first estimate for the daily newspaper ‘i’ which launched in October 2010. The NRS is reporting 423,000 readers for this, the first national daily newspaper to launch for many years.
The NRS will continue to keep track of changes in the readership landscape of Great Britain, and next quarter will mark a milestone in the Survey’s 55 year history when for the first time it will publish not only estimates for printed publications, but also data for print titles combined with their corresponding websites. This is an exciting development for the Survey, these times they are certainly a-changing.