Australian Newsagency Blog

A blog on issues affecting Australia's newsagents, media and small business generally.

Entries from August 2008

OH&S issues with newspaper delivery

August 31st, 2008 · 6 Comments

Respected ergonomist David Nery published a report into OH&S issues surrounding the handling of newspapers.  The study was undertaken at in South Australia the request of the ANF.  Click here for a copy of the report.  While based on the Sputh Australian experience, this report provides an insight which all distribution newsagents will find valuable. […]

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Tags: Newsagency challenges · Newspapers

There is no territory

August 31st, 2008 · 13 Comments

Newsagents still talk of territories and complain when a newsagent or other small retail business offering similar product moves too close to their business. We ought to embrace competition for it is out of robust competition that fight harder and smarter for our own businesses. Another business will not stop competing just because a newsagent […]

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Tags: Newsagency challenges · retail

The best counter offers

August 31st, 2008 · No Comments

The small range of Darrell Lea confectionery and the colourful pads from For Arts Sake are proving to be the best counter offer at our Forest Hill store.  While we have short-term feature product on the counter proper, these two rows of products are consistent performers.  They have good price points and are easily understood […]

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Tags: confectionary · retail · Stationery

No time for Buddy Franklin

August 30th, 2008 · 1 Comment

The Age today has a house ad for home delivery stuck on top of a photo of AFL footballer Buddy Franklin.  Inside is a story about Buddy’s big game today where he is expected to crack 100 goals in a season.  I would subscribe to a newspaper for content and not a free gift. 0 […]

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Tags: newspaper masthead desecration

Promoting Father’s Day in NZ

August 30th, 2008 · No Comments

This is a photo of a window display at a Whitcoulls shop I saw in Auckland yesterday. This is not the same shop as referred to in my previous blog post this morning. The Father’s Day pitch in the window was about every dad having his day. I didn’t feel connected with the pitch – […]

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Tags: Book retailing · Greeting Cards · marketing · retail

Kenny’s Cardiology opens in NZ

August 30th, 2008 · No Comments

I was in Auckland yesterday and unexpectedly found myself in one of the new Kenny’s Cardiology on the day it opened. This is the third of what I am told is hoped to be 20 or so Kenny’s stores in New Zealand. While this is a new-look store for the Kenny’s model, it did not […]

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Tags: Greeting Cards

Productivity Commission report released

August 30th, 2008 · 1 Comment

The Market for Retail Tenancy Leases in Australia, released by the Federal Government’s Productivity Commission earlier this week is the result of the Inquiry earlier this year.   Newsagents were represented at this by NANA, the ANF (under old leadership), Several individual newsagents and myself as a representative of newsXpress. Given the terms of reference […]

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Tags: Newsagency challenges

Lateline discusses newspapers

August 30th, 2008 · 3 Comments

Newsagents are sure to find the video of a discussion on ABC’s Lateline last night between Eric Beecher, publisher of Crikey and former editor of the Sydney Morning Herald, and Richard Ackland, Sydney Morning Herald Columnist, on the future of journalism most interesting. 0 likes

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Tags: Media disruption · Newsagency challenges · Newspapers

The future of newspapers

August 29th, 2008 · 17 Comments

Eric Beecher, publisher of Crikey, and former editor of the Sydney Morning Herald, makes sense in his call for government investment in quality journalism. Beecher made his comments in the wake of the news earlier this week that Fairfax was to cut more than 500 positions. While many newsagents may not care about the quality […]

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Tags: Media disruption · Newsagency challenges · Newspapers

Successful sound cards

August 29th, 2008 · No Comments

We are enjoying good success with these sound cards from Skansen. The stock turn we have achieved is double the usual stock turn for cards in our store and more than double for cards in newsagencies nationally. Other stores offering the same product nearby has not been a barrier. These cards help add to the […]

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Tags: Greeting Cards · retail

Australia Post expensive for ink

August 29th, 2008 · 8 Comments

I should be grumpy at Australia Post continuing to ignore the provisions of the Act under which it operates – the latest catalogue shows the Government owned organisation selling items way outside its charter. What chess sets and BBQ sets have to do with a postal service is beyond me. As I said, I should […]

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Tags: Australia Post · Stationery

Celebrating Live to Ride

August 29th, 2008 · No Comments

I almost missed this. Live to Ride, the magazine for lovers and riders of the great Harley-Davidson motorcycles is 20 years old with its latest issue which came in Wednesday.  This special collectors edition commemorates this milestone. Any specialist magazine reaching 20 years of continuous publishing is something to celebrate and feature in-store. Well done […]

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Tags: magazines · retail

Age staff passionate about their masthead

August 28th, 2008 · No Comments

“Age staff are passionate about their masthead and their readers, and are disappointed that the managers of the company appear willing to sacrifice quality journalism for the sake of the bottom line.”  Michael Bachelard, Senior Journalist with The Age, quoted by the Herald Sun in a story about the decision by Age journalists to strike […]

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Tags: newspaper masthead desecration

Bill Express money returned

August 28th, 2008 · 1 Comment

I have been contacted by three more newsagents over the last 24 hours who have each had three months of Bill Express equipment payments refunded following the inform,ation published here.  In two cases they escalated the matter away from their bank and to the Ombudsman as I suggested.  That one action made their bank realise […]

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Tags: Bill Express

The new beauty magazine

August 28th, 2008 · 1 Comment

Primped is the latest Australian title to launch in the Australian beauty market.  But you will not see this new title in newsagencies.  In fact, you will not see Primped in any retail outlet.  It is an online site and it is free.  It is from Michael Hannan’s Independent Digital Media.  Hannan owned federal Publishing […]

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Tags: Media disruption · Newsagency challenges

Welcome back Pink Ribbon magazine

August 28th, 2008 · 3 Comments

I am glad that newsagents are the distribution point for the Pink magazine published for the National Breast Cancer Foundation. Pink is provided free with the latest issue of Australian Women’s Weekly at any participating newsagency – while stocks last. We are promoting AWW and Pink this at our front counter – the best spot […]

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Tags: magazines · retail · Social responsibility

2009 recycled paper diaries

August 28th, 2008 · No Comments

The Enviro range from Debden is the other 2009 diary range of note we have in store right now. Produced on recycled paper, this range is fashionable and sustainable. As with my previous post, it will be important for us to ensure that our teams know about the back story for these diaries. Speaking of […]

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Tags: Diaries · Environment · Social responsibility

Carbon neutral diaries

August 28th, 2008 · No Comments

I am pleased we have the Debden Kyoto range of diaries in stock. These carbon neutral 2009 diaries will appeal to our customers. That we have them in-stock demonstrates that we have taken care to offer an environmentally friendly product. Printed on recycled paper, these diaries are sure to be a hit this diary season. […]

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Tags: Diaries · Environment · Social responsibility

Driving stationery sales

August 28th, 2008 · 6 Comments

In the sales benchmark report I released a week ago, I outlined some ideas for addressing the decline in stationery sales. I have added to that list to provide newsagents ideas worth considering. Our stationery sales ought to be growing, not declining. From what I can see we let ourselves down. We don’t understand the […]

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Tags: marketing tip · retail · Stationery

The shopfit challenge

August 27th, 2008 · No Comments

We opened our fourth Sophie Randall store yesterday at 211 Toorak Road, Toorak. This store presented some real design challenges – it is only 60 square metres, round in shape, street fronted and has a column in the middle of the space. Our first two designs fought against the odd shape. It was only after […]

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Tags: Gifts · retail

Free scrapbooking content online

August 27th, 2008 · No Comments

Digital Scrapbooking magazine is a reminder that more of what we sell is moving online.  People will need less of the bits and pieces we sell for scrapbook albums.  They will also need less of the physical scrapbook magazines.  I am not sure why we need a magazine on digital scrapbooking.  Check out Scraps of […]

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Tags: magazines · Media disruption

Business discussion for newsagents

August 27th, 2008 · 1 Comment

Tower Systems is hosting a free online business discussion for newsagents at 2:30 next Tuesday, September 2.  All you will need to participate is access to a computer with broadband and a phone for as toll free call for the audio.  This will be an interactive discussion around the state of newsagency retail and the […]

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Tags: Newsagency challenges

The future of book publishing

August 27th, 2008 · No Comments

Sarah Lacey has a good article at Business Week about steps book publishers could consider to remain relevant.  The challenges book publishers are similar to challenges to any other business which relies on print for revenue. 0 likes

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Tags: Media disruption

Father’s Day gifts

August 27th, 2008 · 3 Comments

Our Father’s Day gifts are working well, the Kombi Van book ends especially (see top right corner of the photo). We have a book sale as well – a good tie-in. The poker sets are also working well – notice the poker magazine next to the set. Bringing categories together is important. 0 likes

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Tags: Gifts

Driving traffic with ink flyers

August 27th, 2008 · 18 Comments

We are seeing new customers as a result of the latest Hot Ink promotion. We have had 20,000 flyers delivered to houses around our newsagencies and, as with past flyers, new customers come in seeking product advertised. These results are a reminder of the importance of promoting the business outside our four walls. While it […]

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Tags: marketing · Stationery