Re-imagining newspaper publishing on weak days versus strong days


AAam Smith would be proud of what’s happening in today’s newspaper industry. The Scottish political economist would likely see the hidden hand of the market at work, and the newspaper industry’s response to remake itself and find efficiencies where necessary.

While the Detroit Media Partnership is cutting back from seven-day print publishing to three-day print publishing to focus on profitable days of the week, others are finding new ways to imagine the value propositions of low-demand and high-demand days of the week.

An INMA member recently suggested to me that one such idea suggested that weak days such as Monday, Tuesday, or Saturday (in the United States) be transformed into “deep dives” on “passion subjects.” Perhaps the front page and front section should be about sports during football seasons on Monday.

Other INMA members who disagree with what the Detroit Media Partnership is doing say they prefer to keep their brand alive seven days a week, but allow circulations on the weak days to fall to their “natural levels.” So instead of focusing on seven-day subscriptions, these newspapers are instead focusing on three- and four-day subscription packages – no doubt the profitable days of the week.

Thus, newspapers are beginning to extract themselves from the business practice of propping up weak days and instead focusing resources on strong days.

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