Do newspapers still have ad power? They sure do in the Great White North, according to a new study from News Media Canada, which found that printed newspaper ads engage Canadians more than any other medium, print or digital.

Specifically, the community media policy outlet’s 2019 Local Newspapers: Engaged and Connected Report reveals that advertisement engagement for print newspapers is nearly two times higher than other media formats, including TV, radio, digital newspapers, magazines, social media and online searches.

“With the sheer volume of ads Canadians see each day, we know that having an engaged audience is crucial for advertising to break through and drive action,” said John Hinds, president and CEO of News Media Canada, in a news release. “Our research demonstrates that Canadians are paying attention to newspaper ads, likely because of their trusted environment.”

The study also scored all media on ad effectiveness (calculated as the degree to which consumers noticed advertising minus the level of annoyance). With an Advertising Effectiveness Score of 77, print newspapers dramatically outranked all other media tested and were the only medium that scored a positive result. For context, TV had an Advertising Effectiveness Score of -7 and social media had a score of -16.

In addition, Millennials in particular scored the highest on both general and news engagement measures with print newspapers. In terms of the advertising engagement measure, printed newspapers ranked second only to the browser search bar.

“It’s clear from this research that when Canadians are reading their local paper, they’re engaging with newspaper ads at a deeper level than they are with other media formats,” said Hinds. “This new information confirms the power of newspaper advertising and, we hope, will help marketers reconsider advertising in local newspapers across the country.”

This new research, paired with the seventh annual Newspapers 24/7 Readership Report, found that newspaper readership in Canada is at an all-time high—with nearly nine out of 10 Canadians reading newspapers on a weekly basis.

The survey was conducted by independent firm Totum Research and was produced with the financial support of the Government of Canada through the Canada Periodical Fund of the Department of Canadian Heritage.

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Richard Carufel

Richard Carufel

Richard Carufel is editor of Bulldog Reporter and the Daily ’Dog, one of the web’s leading sources of PR and marketing communications news and opinions. He has been reporting on the PR and communications industry for over 12 years, and has interviewed hundreds of journalists and PR industry leaders.

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