Australian Newsagency Blog

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

Entries from April 2009

Where is the stimulus package newspaper offer?

April 30th, 2009 · 3 Comments

With most Australians $900 better off this month thanks to the hand out from the Federal Government, I am surprised that newspaper publishers have not pitched a stimulus bonus subscription offer. They could have easily and cheaply promoted an offer which chased some of the $900. A well pitched offer would have helped their businesses […]

[Read more →]

Tags: Newspapers

Do newsagents have the guts to fight for their future?

April 30th, 2009 · 20 Comments

The treatment of newsagents by News magazines over Alpha magazine is, in my view appalling. We built this title on a promise of partnership with a significant financial carrot as our return.  News magazines has taken that carrot away and handed the title to NDD, a magazine distributor with a less than clean track record […]

[Read more →]

Tags: magazines · supplier arrogance

Mother’s Day in newsagencies

April 30th, 2009 · No Comments

Mother’s Day is the second biggest season for greeting cards on the newsagent seasonal calendar.  It is beaten only by Christmas and is around 50% ahead of Valentine’s Day. While card sales equal only 20% of Christmas, is a very important season, generating considerable additional traffic in newsagencies. Like most newsagents, we are pursuing every […]

[Read more →]

Tags: Greeting Cards · retail

Chasing early Women’s Weekly sales

April 30th, 2009 · No Comments

Rather than wait for marketing collateral, we went out early yesterday with an Australian Women’s Weekly display in the mall in front of our shop. Given that our competitors are Coles, Safeway and Big W, it makes sense that we go hard early in the on-sale for this title. AWW is achieving good success this […]

[Read more →]

Tags: magazines · retail

Tully Times gets behind stimulus campaign

April 30th, 2009 · 1 Comment

The Tully Times has got behind the stimulus campaign which I promoted here and reproduced the poster in their newspaper this week.  It’s good to see the poster getting used.  Newsagents are encouraging other retailers nearby to put it in their windows.  I am happy for it to be used anywhere to promote local businesses. […]

[Read more →]

Tags: Social responsibility

Optimism in the gloom

April 30th, 2009 · No Comments

There is plenty of gloomy news out of the US overnight which relates to categories important to Australian newsagencies. US stationery retailer Office Depot reported a sales drop of 18% last quarter.  The Wall Street Journal says this is due, in part, to newcomers in the stationery field.  Most newsagents reported a drop in stationery […]

[Read more →]

Tags: Newsagency challenges · Newsagency opportunities · Optimism

Watching the sunset

April 29th, 2009 · 4 Comments

I am in Perth tonight and was fortunate to witness a glorious sunset.  The sky rolled through grey, pink, red, orange and, finally, black. Sunsets for me are like smelling roses can be for others.  Outside our four walls, life goes on. 0 likes

[Read more →]

Tags: Uncategorized

Alpha off to a rocky start with NDD

April 29th, 2009 · 13 Comments

Alpha allocation by NDD for my Forest Hill and Frankston newsagencies today was good.  I have received calls from several newsagents advising that NDD has increased allocation by between 25% and 50% on the back of a previous sell through of 50% or less.  This is what newsagents feared from NDD. 0 likes

[Read more →]

Tags: magazine distribution · magazines

Promoting Better Homes and Gardens

April 29th, 2009 · 2 Comments

We are promoting Better Homes and Gardens at the counter from today.  The enhancements to the magazine and its popularity early in the on-sale period make the investment of space sensible for us.  In addition to this prime counter location, we have Better Homes and Gardens in its usual location and in a couple of […]

[Read more →]

Tags: magazines · retail

I told you so – a new line of greeting cards

April 29th, 2009 · 1 Comment

We have been testing a new line of greeting cards at our newsagencies and our Sophie Randall businesses. The I told you so range was conceived and written by Jason Schwarten, manager of our newsXpress Forest Hill store. The original artwork is by Vienna Chen, our graphic designer at Tower Systems. The cards are published […]

[Read more →]

Tags: Greeting Cards

US newspaper circulation declines 7%

April 29th, 2009 · No Comments

US newspaper circulation fell 7% on a year on year basis.  PaidContent) has more on this grim story.  While there is a considerable difference in the US and Australian marketplaces in terms of newspapers, the factors impacting newspapers in the US will impact us here but to what extent is unknown.  Publishers show they know […]

[Read more →]

Tags: Media disruption · Newsagency challenges

Magazine labels in the spotlight

April 28th, 2009 · No Comments

On April 22 at the Tower Blog I wrote about the value of professional magazine labels.  For years at Tower we have recommended laser labels to newsagents but also supported thermal labels printed in a single strip on the Blaster and other printers.  We encourage newsagents to choose what is right for their needs. Yesterday, […]

[Read more →]

Tags: magazines

A hack on how to read digital magazines for free

April 28th, 2009 · 1 Comment

Check out how to use the Safari browser to read digital editions of magazines withough paying for a subscription.  I am publishing this information here to bring attention to the hack so it may be shutdown. 0 likes

[Read more →]

Tags: Ethics · magazines

US luxury magazine closes

April 28th, 2009 · 2 Comments

Portfolio magazine was closed this week.  Condé Nast closed the title two years after launch and close to US$100 million invested.   Jeff Jarvis asks the big question, whether this is an indication that magazines are doomed?  He goes on to say it probably means the days of launches are over.  We are having a busy […]

[Read more →]

Tags: magazines

NDD cries foul on Alpha

April 28th, 2009 · 29 Comments

AUSTRALIAN NEWSAGENCY BLOG GETS IT WRONG Incorrect information has been reported in a recent Australian Newsagency blog, alleging that NDD ignores retailer supply level requests for Alpha when in fact retailers were invited to review their supply in NDD’s e Newsletter on 7th April. The blog also suggests ‘lack of control’ by retailers has resulted […]

[Read more →]

Tags: magazine distribution · magazines

The newsagency community connection

April 28th, 2009 · 1 Comment

When speaking at newsagent conferences and workshops over the last two years I have asked what do we stand for?  A common answer from newsagents was community connection, being local. Being connected with the local community is a good unique selling proposition when most of what we sell in our newsagencies is available from other […]

[Read more →]

Tags: Customer Service · Newsagency opportunities

Environmental pitch for magazines

April 28th, 2009 · 1 Comment

What is environmentally better than buying a book or magazine? Buying it online to either read on the Internet or download to read on your computer. No muss, no fuss, no scattered magazines lying around taking up space, no magazines to throw in a landfill. From a strong pitch last week by Zinio on the […]

[Read more →]

Tags: magazines · Newsagency challenges

New Simpsons card range popular

April 28th, 2009 · 1 Comment

The new Simpsons card range from Hallmark is popular.  We are seeing excellent results in our stores.  Since the range is right at the front of the shop, it is working as a good drawcard.  Licenced product like this Simpsons range is important for newsagents since shows us as being current.  The card department plays […]

[Read more →]

Tags: Greeting Cards

VANA quits Futures Project

April 27th, 2009 · 3 Comments

VANA announced today that it is quitting its Futures Project.  Regulars here will know that I have been a critic of this project from the outset.  It is one of the reasons I resigned from VANA in February. VANA has an excellent opportunity to refocus on being an association.  Now, more than ever, newsagents need […]

[Read more →]

Tags: Newsagency opportunities

State newsagent associations granted collective bargaining right

April 27th, 2009 · 12 Comments

Newsagents have been granted collective bargaining rights by the ACCC.  The QNF, NANA and VANA, state associations representing newsagents in Queensland, New South Wales and the ACT and Victoria have been granted the right to represent newsagents in this.  This is an initiative started by the QNF and NANA.  Congratulations to them for pursuing this […]

[Read more →]

Tags: Newsagency opportunities

Promoting People’s Friend magazine

April 27th, 2009 · 4 Comments

We sell upwards of 50 copies of People’s Friend magazine each week at our Forest Hill store.  This week, we have the latest issue co-located next to the Herald Sun (in the old Alpha magazine stand) in pursuit of even stronger sales.  The free novel which comes with People’s Friend should also help drive sales. […]

[Read more →]

Tags: magazines · retail

Promoting Gourmet Traveller

April 27th, 2009 · 14 Comments

We are promoting the latest issue of Gourmet Traveller at the counter this week.  The free Italian cookbook which comes with the magazine earns it a place in this high traffic location.  As we are finding more often the case now, we received little in the way of marketing collateral to support the title – […]

[Read more →]

Tags: magazines · retail

The monopoly is over

April 27th, 2009 · No Comments

“Now the consumers have taken charge — they decide what news is,” Osborne said. “Monopoly power vanished. The existence of a competitive marketplace is permanent. And we should have known and we should have anticipated that.” This is former Dallas Morning News publisher Burl Osborne speaking at a newspaper editors convention on the weekend.  This […]

[Read more →]

Tags: Competition · Newsagency opportunities · Newspapers

Excellent results from Amazon

April 26th, 2009 · No Comments

Amazon has reported a 24% jump in profit for the quarter ending March 31 compared to the same quarter last year.  This is on the back of an 18% increase in revenue to US$4.89 billion.  These results are significant when compared to the performance of retail businesses in the same period.  Publishers Weekly analyses the […]

[Read more →]

Tags: Media disruption · Newsagency challenges

Newspaper and magazine distribution changes in the UK

April 26th, 2009 · 3 Comments

The Financial Times reports on changes in the UK around the distribution of newspapers and magazines. We ought to expect structural changes globally in the distribution of newspapers and magazines as publishers look for ways to improve efficiency and increase or at least protect sales. While not on the scale of the UK changes, the […]

[Read more →]

Tags: magazine distribution · Newsagency challenges · newsagent software · Newspapers