In the mood: effects of the introduction of a sunday paper

In the spring of 2004 De Telegraaf, the largest Dutch daily newspaper, introduced a very unusual phenomenon for the Netherlands: a Sunday edition. An extensive research project concerning the introduction was carried out, focusing on two central questions: (a) are there cannibalisation effects on the Saturday edition, and (b) is the effectiveness of advertisements influenced by the relaxed Sunday mood of the reader. From publications in psychology and communication science it becomes clear that persuasive impact is greater if the person is in a happy, benevolent mood. Our results show that there are some cannibalisation effects, but they are limited. Furthermore our research makes clear that people are in a better mood on Sunday; people in a better mood see more advertising, so people see more advertising on Sunday, which explains the high advertising reach scores that were found in this study, as compared with the benchmarks. Introducing a new Sunday issue is a promising tool for newspapers to use in strengthening their position. For advertisers, it is an opportunity they should take advantage of.

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