How valid are modeled newspaper readership estimates being used in the United States?

Like other countries, advertising is big business in the United States. Newspapers have historically been the advertising revenue leader; however their position has been challenged in recent years as the last remaining “mass media� in a time when advertisers are seeking highly efficient and demographically targeted options for their investments. To continue to be a premiere advertising media, it’s clear that newspapers must change their business practices. In 2004, the industry accounted for $263.867 billion in media expenditures led by direct mail (19.78 %), newspapers (17.69 %) and broadcast television (17.67 %). Just ten years earlier the rankings were newspapers (22.77%), broadcast television (20.92%) and direct mail (19.79%) . When considering the following information, it is essential to understand that in the United States several factors uniquely combine to make the newspaper industry distinctive from its international peers. First, newspapers are almost exclusively a local media. Aside from a half-dozen publications marketed at national audiences, the nearly 1,400 dailies in the United States are editorially targeted to serve their local communities. With a population of nearly 297 million people covering 3.5 million square miles, most newspaper competition for readership is from adjacent, not directly overlapping markets. Nielsen delivers audience ratings for 1,361 television stations from 210 markets. Arbitron supplies audience ratings for 13,838 radio stations in 298 markets.

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