Monday, November 07, 2005

Avoiding Hari-Kari In The Circulation Department as Readers Say Sayonara To Newspapers

or Mama, Don't Let Your Babies Grow Up To Be Publishers
If you want to have a good cry, check out the latest FAS-FAX numbers that show 18 of the top 20 newspapers reported circulation drops.
The loudest alarm was sounded in San Francisco, where the Chronicle saw its daily run plunge by 16.5 percent and 13.5 percent on Sunday.
Things were only slightly less grim at the Boston Globe, which dropped about 8 percent. Last week, I wrote about how I got a call from a telemarketer beseeching me to take the Sunday Globe for just 88 cents, notwithstanding the fact I live just outside New York.
At the time, it seemed like a desperate gambit from a circulation department devoid of sound ideas about how to stop hemorrhaging readers.
Now, that desperation appears to be well-founded even if believing there's an underserved population eager to read the Globe in the New York suburbs remains a lunkheaded notion.
It's interesting to note that at the same time the Globe's far-flung circ grab is underway, execs spun Editor & Publisher by proclaiming they were "managing down its 'other-paid' circulation."
I'd like to say that we all know newspapers still matter. But that's obviously not the case.

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