Newspaper inserts slip below magazine and third-party insert volumes for first time | DMA

Filter By

Show All

Connect to


Newspaper inserts slip below magazine and third-party insert volumes for first time

Today the DMA releases its latest research into the inserts industry, revealing magazine and third-party distributions have overtaken newspaper inserts to have a larger market share for the first time since the report began.

Overall, insert volumes have dropped by around 25% in the past year – to 908 million. According to the report, this is mostly due to the steep decline in newspaper inserts, which have dropped by 72% over the 12-month period. On the other hand, magazine and third-party inserts have remained relatively stable, falling by 9% (137 million) and 9% (109 million) respectively.

“The continued decline in newspaper inserts remains a concern, but is being offset in part by the demand for third-party dispatch. It’s fair to say newspaper volumes may continue to fall, perhaps largely due to a mass shift towards digital current affairs content, but they will continue to have an important place as a marketing medium for the foreseeable future,” stated Ben Briggs, Deputy Chair of the DMA Print Council, and Media Strategy Director, Edit.

Marketers of print media shouldn’t necessarily view this report with gloom. The decline in volumes can be partly attributed to better segmentation and delivery of campaigns. Advertisers are able to target consumers more efficiently and with better results, reducing the need for large-scale, scattergun approaches.

Briggs added: “Inserts are a unique advertising platform for showcasing products and services. They stand out from the medium they are placed in, possess the additional asset of being tactile that is missing from some other media, and can be produced in a variety of sizes allowing brands to construct creative messages tailored to the task at hand. This tactility can go as far as offering potential customers the opportunity to sample the product too.”

The overall volume of the inserts industry has declined by 45% since 2014, although the third-party channel has actually increased over the same period by 9.8%. The third-party channel enjoys certain advantages over its rivals in the media mix. Delivered along with ‘host’ carrier brands, third-party inserts arrive when the consumer is in a positive mind-set, just as they receive their purchased items.

Inserts continue to offer a viable alternative to direct mail. As data protection legislation tightens, inserts give advertisers the opportunity to reach an audience without handling their personal data.

“Inserts give advertisers a way to be targeted and relevant, while respecting privacy and personal data. They offer a unique opportunity for marketers to be creative in terms of how consumers interact with them as they are inherently tactile as a channel, meaning how they look, feel, even smell can be used to make them more engaging,” summarised Rachel Aldighieri, MD of the DMA.

Hear more from the DMA

Please login to comment.