NAA Releases Profile of American Newspaper Media Industry Revenue 2012
ARLINGTON, VA—April 8, 2013—Overall, total revenue for U.S. newspapers declined by 2 percent in 2012 from a year earlier, according to new data compiled by the Newspaper Association of America.
In total, the U.S. newspaper media industry took in $38.6 billion in 2012 compared with $39.5 billion in revenue in 2011, according to NAA’s projections.
The numbers reveal that while advertising revenue continues to decline—down 6 percent in 2012—several other categories of newspaper media revenue are now growing. Circulation revenue grew 5 percent in 2012, while a host of new revenue sources not tied to conventional advertising and that barely existed a few years ago grew by 8 percent. These new revenue sources, which include such items as digital consulting for local business and e-commerce transactions, now account for close to one-in-ten dollars coming into newspaper media companies. They are significant enough in scale that NAA has begun to collect detailed data about these revenue categories and track their trajectory year-to-year for the first time.
The new data offer a more granular and comprehensive picture of how newspaper media are operating today than was previously compiled by any source.
The numbers portray an industry that, faced with significant disruption in the last decade, has begun to measurably change its essential revenue model. That has begun by turning more to circulation, to digital, and to developing new revenue sources.
“America’s newspaper media are transforming themselves,” said Caroline Little, NAA president and CEO. “In virtually every community they serve, newspapers have the biggest newsrooms, the best-known brands and significant audience market share. Now they are building on those to find new ways to serve audiences and local businesses.”
The overall composition of newspaper revenue, the data show, has thus also changed. Based on data from companies that provided detailed breakdowns, circulation now makes up 27 percent of total newspaper media revenue, new revenue sources 8 percent, digital advertising 11 percent, niche publishing and direct marketing 8 percent, and print advertising 46 percent.