As Newspaper Advertising Options Disappear, Strategic Marketers Turn to Proven Print Tactics

As newspaper advertising options disappear, the influence of newspapers continues to shrink compared to other forms of media. Strategic marketers are turning to proven print tactics to replace lost coverage.


Coverage for newspaper advertising products continues a rapid decline in 2022.

  • Gannett dropped TMC newspaper advertising products in 40+ markets during Q1 2022, and 55 more will be cut by May 2022.
  • The estimated total U.S. daily newspaper circulation decreased 19% and Sunday print circulation decreased 14% in 2020 from the previous year, according to Pew Research.
  • The total estimated advertising revenue for the newspaper industry in 2020 was $9.6 billion, down 25% from 2019.

Audience Influence Shrinks as Newspaper Coverage Continues Decline

As circulation decreases, the influence of newspapers continues to shrink compared to other forms of media. Coupons, internet ads, advertising inserts, and direct mail out-perform newspaper advertising by a significant margin.

What is a more effective way to replace newspaper advertising to reach consumers and drive them to action?

 58% of former newspaper subscribers have responded to ads or coupons in the mailbox in the past 12 months. These former newspaper subscribers also have responded to ads across multiple channels in the past year:

  • 45% have responded to an internet banner ad
  • 43% have responded to a pre-roll video ad
  • 44% have responded to a streaming TV ad

Mspark is uniquely qualified to respond to newspapers’ exits from your target markets. Our coverage map shows areas where our coverage can replace lost newspaper coverage.

Mspark’s monthly delivery is driven by our rural audience. We help you identify consumers in eliminated newspaper coverage areas and then target them down to the household level with print campaigns and complementary digital campaigns. These targeted multi-channel campaigns also increase new customer traffic from areas that were never included in newspaper coverage.

Amplify Results

Coordinated digital media exposure extends reach and frequency to create a truly powerful 1-2 punch to drive results.

  • Ads with both print and digital touch points increase awareness and retention: when consumers see an ad both in print and digital media, they are 52% more likely to notice the ad and—more importantly—52% more likely to recall the message.
  • Print serves as an onramp to your website: 61% of consumers visited a retailer’s website after receiving a print ad.
  • Advertisers see as much as a 30% lift in response when print is paired with digital media.
  • Purchase intent increases 175% when digital campaigns are anchored with print.
  • 60% of consumers are more likely to make a purchase after seeing an ad offline and online.

To learn more about the benefits of coordinated campaigns anchored by direct mail, read 10 Reasons Why Direct Mail Marketing is a Core Component of Today’s Strategic Mix. Reach out today to connect with an expert to discuss your marketing goals.

Sources: Millward Brown Print Campaign Analysis; USPS Consumer Mail Moments Spring 2020, Summit Research; Valassis Awareness to Action Study; Connecting for Action – Canada Post Neuroscience Report; Valassis Purse String Survey