It’s 2016 and my dad still buys the paper every morning. I’m not sure if this is because he actually enjoys reading a newspaper or if it’s a habit he doesn’t wish to break. He also watches the news religiously, knows how to use his smart phone to check for news online and is subscribed to a breaking news service that texts you regular updates. This guy is with it! Oh and did I mention that a newspaper costs Ksh60 in Kenya? That’s about Ksh400 every week which translates to almost Ksh200o a month. I mean even financially it doesn’t make sense for him to buy papers which will pile up in the house until mum barter trades them for some household item. So, why does he buy or read the paper again? I dunno guys I’ll have to ask him the next time I’m home.
Newspapers have for a long time been an authority when it comes to news which explains why despite technological advancements even First World countries continue to churn out copies. Earlier this year the Nation Media Group acquired state of the art printing presses worth Ksh2bn that exponentially increased their printing capacity and quality. Production time has been slashed by 65% from six to two and half hours and wastage has been reduced significantly, saving the company Ksh8 million annually. Before arriving at this decision a team from the Editorial, Circulation, Advertising and Finance sat down to discuss the future of newspapers for the conglomerate. Seeing an under-tapped market they chose to invest in what looks a good investment given the new special page advert designs such as super-panorama spreads and memo sticks which are guaranteed to reel in advertisers.
There seems to be a lot of money out in terms of newspaper production so how do they manage to stay afloat? The obvious costs are printing, paper and staff but the main source of revenue is advertising where a company buys ad space on the paper. Brands must decide beforehand how much they are willing to spend,what their end goal is&if they are reaching their target market e.g. are they having an offer and would like to use an ad to increase their sales? As much as newspapers have a wide reach, it’s harder to analyse the results of the ad compared to clicks, likes and shares on social media which might have a greater reach. Generally the cost of an ad is determined by several factors such as:
- Size- how much space is it going to take? more space=more money
- Position- front page or centerfold? a more prominent space=more money
- Color- color or black and white? color ads=more moneys
So there you have it, seems like someone other than my dad is keeping them going 🙂 oh and here’s an interesting feature that shows how far Kenya’s media industry has come.