Verified Audit CirculationViewPoint
Volume 4 | Number 8 | August 2008

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This Month's Features:
Report Value & Usefulness Survey
Looking Ahead – Challenges and Strengths
Consumer Coupon Usage Up
Events Calendar
Total Newspaper Readership Grows
Introducing New Promotional Materials from Verified

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Report Value & Usefulness Survey

IpsosIn our ongoing efforts to better serve our clients, Verified would like to get your opinion on the value and usefulness of our audit reports and the information they provide.

We invite you to answer our short survey that will take no more than five minutes of your time. Your feedback is invaluable to us and we look forward to hearing from you.

Click here to go directly to the survey

Please feel free to forward the survey to anyone in your company who may have an opinion to share about our audit report (e.g., sales director or publisher).

Again, thank you for your time.

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Looking Ahead – Challenges and Strengths

by Jennifer Armor

Challenges and StrengthsMassive layoffs, employee buyouts, ever-decreasing ad revenue, bad economic times. You can't read an industry magazine, newsletter, email, or blog without hearing a new tale of woe.

Verified recently conducted a survey of publishers about the biggest challenges facing them in 2008 and in the future.

  • "Further erosion of print advertising budgets in favor of digital/online which don't yet provide the same profitability."

  • "Declines in readership."

  • "Absence of younger audiences in all manner of print media which points to reduced circulation."

  • "Big corporations crowding the marketplace, eliminating independent, entrepreneurial media publishers who are providing a voice to individual citizens."

  • "Trying to figure out how the Internet will increase readership."

  • "Stagnant economy."

  • "Keeping printing costs down and [the] increase of gas prices have increased delivery charges."

  • "New media and the rise of Internet usage by more people."

When we asked what they thought were the most significant trends in publishing today, they told us that increased investment in online/websites and continued declines in circulation were the most significant. In addition, increased demand for ROI from advertisers and media buyers and continued fragmentation of media topped their list.

When asked what strengths print media can provide that other media cannot they had some strong feelings.

  • "Providing media in the form of printed word in a familiar, trustworthy vehicle, though even that is getting more difficult to achieve."

  • "Credibility."

  • "Guaranteed usage."

  • "I still think there are people out there that like to hold a hard copy of publications. It's sometimes better to be able to pick up a copy of your favorite paper than to go to your computer [to] log on [and] weave through several web pages to find what you are looking for. Maybe I am just old school, but I like my paper in paper form. There are still many people who don't have access to computers. We need to just get more people to read..."

Publishers are aware that they either have to get onboard with new media to reach readers or lose them. But how to use new media to grow readership or generate ad revenue is still a puzzle. As with the rest of us, increasing costs, combined with a sluggish economy, are hitting them hard.

Publishers told us that they are still an optimistic group, though. They believe that print has core strengths that new media doesn't—familiarity and trust.

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Consumer Coupon Usage Up

Coupons!By Jennifer Armor

While a significant number of people are moving to paperless and online coupons, the Sunday newspaper remains the number one place for consumers to find coupons. Other sources include mail (35%), in-store coupons (33%), loyalty cards (22%), in-store circulars (22%), weekday newspapers (17%), product packages (17%), and magazines (15%). Internet coupon usage is up a whopping 83% over the past three years; however, only 11% of consumers are using online coupons.

Scarborough Research recently examined Grocery Coupon Clipping Households, or those that use grocery coupons once a week or more. Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and Rochester, New York, led the U.S. in coupon usage. Cities with high coupon usage also tended to have higher Sunday newspaper readership.

The Scarborough study also found that Grocery Coupon Clipping Households tended to spend more on groceries weekly ($114 verses $110 for other U.S. households). They are more likely to buy a larger variety of products. Demographically, coupon usage spans all income brackets, but those with higher household incomes tend to use slightly more grocery coupons.

According to CMS Inc., a coupon-processing agent in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, consumers redeemed 2.6 billion manufacturer's coupons last year. This marked the first year since 1992 that coupon usage has not fallen. CMS said that historical trends show that coupon usage has been up in tough economic times, so they expect even more usage in 2008.

"You can't really cut the price of gas, but you can cut the cost of food in half," said Teri Gault, founder and CEO of The site helps consumers coordinate manufacturer coupon use with store sales to maximize savings.

With the price of consumer goods continuing to rise, the importance of a "good deal" is increasingly important to shoppers. Coupons provide a promotional vehicle that stores and products can use to get shoppers in the door and spending despite uncertain economic times.

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Events Calendar

2nd Annual Multicultural Marketing2nd Annual Multicultural Marketing: Why One Size Doesn't Fit All
September 24 – 25, 2008
Toronto, ON

Independent Free Papers of America
September 24 27, 2008
Seattle, WA

National Newspaper Association 122nd Annual Convention and Trade Show
September 25 28, 2008
St. Paul, MN

Washington Newspaper Publishers Association 121st Annual Convention
October 2 – 4, 2008
Yakima, WA

American Magazine Conference 2008
October 5 – 7, 2008
San Francisco, CA

SNA Fall Publisher's & Advertising Director's Conference
October 7 – 10, 2008
Minneapolis, MN

Arizona Newspaper Association Fall Convention & Annual Meeting
October 10 – 11, 2008
Tempe, AZ

DMA • 08DMA 08 Conference & Exhibition
October 11 – 16, 2008
Las Vegas, NV

NAA 2008 Recruitment Advertising Forum
October 12 – 14, 2008
Chicago, IL

Executing Social Media
October 15 – 16, 2008
Atlanta, GA

ANA 2008 Annual Conference: Masters of Marketing
October 16 – 19, 2008
Orlando, FL

Pennsylvania Newspaper Publisher's 84th Annual Convention
October 22 – 24, 2008
Pittsburgh, PA

California Newspaper Publishers Association Press Summit
October 23 – 25, 2008
Universal City, CA

Mastering Magazine Production Three-Day Certificate Program
October 22 – 24, 2008
New York, NY

New England Newspaper Association Fall Conference
October 22 – 24, 2008
Foxwoods Resort, Connecticut

Inland Press Association 123rd Annual Meeting
October 26 – 28, 2008
Chicago, IL

AAN Publisher's Conference
October 31 – November 1, 2008
Santa Fe, NM

Association Publishing 2008: Purpose, Process, and Politics
November 10 – 11, 2008
Chicago, IL

Interactive Local Media 2008
November 19 – 21, 2008
Santa Clara, CA

If you have an event that you would like to announce, please send your information

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Total Newspaper Readership Grows

Total Newspaper Readership GrowsFor all the gloom in the newspaper industry, total readership—including website visitors—is increasing, according to Mediamark Research and Intelligence, which found a 2.1% increase in audience size to 80.6 million between spring 2007 and spring 2008. The survey was performed by MRI for the Newspaper National Network (NNN) in the top 100 media markets.

Importantly, this figure includes unduplicated online readers, counting each person who reads both newspapers and online just once.

According to the Newspaper Association of America, the total unique audience for newspaper websites reached 66.4 million in the first quarter of 2008—12.3% greater than the same period in 2007. Visitors generated 3.1 billion page views in the first quarter, up from 3 billion last year.

In addition to the contribution of newspaper websites, NNN cited a couple of other factors to account for the increase in readership. While conceding that circulation has declined over the last decade, NNN noted that publishers only cut marginal—not core—circulation. There has also been a proliferation of free newspapers targeting consumers, like AM New York and Metro. Finally, there has been an increase in pass-along readership.

2008 MediaPost Communications

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Introducing New Promotional Materials from Verified

Verified Audit Circulation: How to Promote Your Audit KitIn order to get the biggest return on your audit investment, make sure you promote your audit. Verified is proud to announce a new suite of promotional products. Please use them to help you promote your audited status.

How to Promote Your Audit Kit
This new kit provides tips on promoting your audited status, using the Verified logo, a detailed explanation of how to read your audit report, and answers to some key advertiser questions. It also includes sample house ads you can use in your publication or other promotional material.

Click here or on the image to the right to download the new How to Promote Your Audit Kit.

Circle of Excellence
The new Verified Audit Circle of Excellence is awarded to publications that consistently demonstrate they meet the highest standards of audit excellence. Circle winners are entitled to refer to and publicly display the Circle of Excellence in their publication, media kits, and other promotional materials along with the standard Verified trademark.

House Ads
Verified house ads are available in a variety of sizes in both color and black and white. The ads are customizable to allow you to include your logo and copy. If you would like to receive an electronic copy of the artwork, please contact your account coordinator. You can view the ads in the How to Promote Your Audit Kit.

If you have any questions, please contact Verified at 415-461-6006.

Please send comments and story ideas to or contact us at:

Verified Audit Circulation
900 Larkspur Landing Circle, Suite 295
Larkspur, CA 94939-1758
415.461.6007 fax


2008 Verified Audit Circulation.