20% Down Is The New Up: The First Quarter's Tally

Posted by: Jon Fine on May 5, 2009

I’ve made the point (over and over again) that the dynamics of this ad environment, especially on the print side, have deteriorated to the extent that the old saying—flat is the new up—no longer applies. These days, 20% down is the new up.

A series of financial report cards have recently came out, in the form of publicly-held media companies’ first quarter results. They provide ample evidence that a print media unit that has lost 20% of its ad revenues is significantly outperforming its peers.

E.W. Scripps:
Total ad revenue at newspaper division dropped almost 30%. Online ad revenue for newspapers dropped 27%.

Belo:
Total ad revenue down 28%.

Time Warner:
Ad revenue at publishing unit Time Inc. down 30%.

Gannett:
Publishing ad revenue down 34%. US ad revenue down 28%, British ad revenue down over 38%

New York Times Co.:
Ad revenue down 27%

McClatchy:
Ad revenue down 29.5%

Washington Post Co.
Print ad revenues at the flagship daily dropped 33%. Ad revenue at Newsweek fell 22%.

Meredith Corp.:
Publishing ad revenues off . . . 12%.

(everybody now: Meredith FTW!)

 

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