Newspaper Advertising

Three Things You Should Know about Newspaper Advertising

Newspaper advertising can be an effective way to spread information about the services or goods provided by your company. Each newspaper ad is priced based on its placement in the newspaper, the duration of its run and the amount of space it will take up. Sometimes, depending on the newspaper itself, prices can run higher for the same placement. For example, on page 2, above the fold you will pay less at a local newspaper than for an identical advertisement in a national newspaper.

Before purchasing advertisements in a newspaper, there are several key factors that companies or individuals should be aware of.


Because of the new, digital age of media, newspaper circulation is not as wide-spread as it once was. Publishers are now in competition with the freedom, ease and low cost of the Internet. Newspaper circulation has plummeted from decades ago, when the Internet was little more than a vision, to what the Internet has become. As a result, this has made the cost of purchasing advertisements in a newspaper rise significantly to cover the costs of producing newspapers that reach a much smaller amount of subscribers.


Today’s average individual is estimated to read at an 8th grade level. As such, many people don’t bother to pick up a newspaper, let alone subscribe to one. Most newspapers, with the exception of a very few, are written to readers whose level of proficiency is not where it necessarily should be. As such, newspaper advertising should rely more on visual appeal, rather than wordiness. Using pictures and other graphics in combination with words that are short and to the point, advertisers can appeal to the average customer without making them bored with complicated explanations of a product or service.

Advertisers who wish to purchase space in a newspaper should be sure to know their audience beforehand. For example, placing an ad in the The Wall Street Journal for a free gift week at a cosmetics counter would not be as effective as placing the same at in The New York Post where readers specifically look to find stories and other information about fashion, celebrities and other society concerns. Readers of The Wall Street Journal are looking for information about stocks and bonds and would be much less likely to pay attention to an advertisement for anything that does not relate to their specific interests.


Depending on the newspaper, advertisers may have the choice between placing an advertisement in color or in black-and-white. While black-and-white may be more cost effective, one would be wise to consider the potential for drawing in additional customers with an ad that grabs the attention of the reader, such as color may do. Photography or graphics versus plain text should also be a consideration. When thinking about newspaper advertising, the rule should be, “Show it, before you say it”. Readers are naturally drawn to a visually appealing advertisement and advertisers should be aware of this when planning to place their ad.

Newspaper advertising can be a very effective, and cost effective method for reaching new customers or informing current ones about a new product or service, however it is important to be aware who the target audience is by asking questions beforehand such as, ‘why are they reading this newspaper?’ and ‘Is this the most effective newspaper to attract customers to my specific product?”

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