Tuesday, March 3, 2009

What's up with the skinny News & Observer?

Amazing: Tuesday's News & Observer was a very skinny 38 pages.

"A" Section 10 pages (including 4 1/2 pages of ads)
"B" Section 12 pages
"C" Section (Sports) 6 pages
"D" Section 10 pages

Grand total: 38 pages


Anonymous said...

Recent Sunday Tri-City Herald:

A: 8 pages
B: (Metro) 8 pages
C: (features) 8 pages
D: (sports) 8 pages

Another Day put B & D @ six and I've heard it will be getting smaller by quarter's end. But considering how few people we actually have to the paper out these days, I'm not sure anyone is making a fuss in-house.

Anonymous said...

How are the ads? Since they're running as fast as suscribers, I wonder what percent less they have?

Anonymous said...

Ya, the Tri-City Herald has really shrunk. Monday's A-section was only 6 pages, I believe. Usually, the op-ed section alone takes up the last two pages. Monday, it was only one. Jeez.

And there was a full-page ad from a very small local boutique in the A-section. Did they give a huge discount or have a sale on ads or something? How on earth would a small boutique afford that kind of ad?

Anonymous said...

I think the conversation between salesperson and boutique owner went something like this ...

SalesPerson: I have a great deal for you. I can get you a FULL page for half price. That's just $2,000 on a Monday.

Boutique Owner: $2,000? My net profit for the last two months doesn't amount to $2,000.

SP: Tough times call for tough action. You have to be brave in these economic times. You have to see this as an opportunity to take business from your competitors who are afraid to advertise!

BO: I don't have any competition.

SP: What about Wal-Mart? What about Target? Aren't you interested in capturing business away from them?

BO: I don't think that's my target demograph ...

SP: You have to think big! We CAN capture those customers. We CAN get them to come to your store instead of Wal-Mart. Yes We Can!

BO: I'm sorry. I just don't have $2,000.

SP: That's OK. While credit might have dried up at banks, we'll extend credit to our loyal advertisers.

BO: But what happens 30 days from now when I've only made $1,000 and you come knocking on my d ...

SP: You can't be so negative. Here's what I'm going to do. I'll put you down for a full page ad in the Monday edition for $2,000. I'll have our art department send you something to look at. We don't know what the future holds, but at least I ... errr you ... will stand a chance of making your numbers this quarter. You have a great day, OK? Cya!

Anonymous said...

@8:48 p.m.: A six-page B/D section isn't that uncommon on a day-to-day basis. It's the eight-pagers that are a surprise to us. And Monday has been a four-page B/D section for as long as I can remember.

@8:36 a.m.: Please give them more credit. The boutique does fairly well for a small local shop and regularly runs a color ad in a prime position. I don't know specifics of her contract, but iirc it's not much of a stretch to go from that to a full-page b/w ad in a Monday paper (we're talking a few hundred dollars, not her monthly profits).

And knowing the shopowner and her clientele, the ad paid for itself by the end of the week, if not sooner.

That being said, as full disclosure, I am a short-timer. It's sad how much the Herald has changed in my few years there.

I feel like I've somehow dodged a bullet, but I can't say I'm content about it.