Newspapers used to represent such an enormous percentage of the media universe that when their market dominance declined to what is still a very significant number, many would-be marketers were quick to write them off.

But ignoring newspapers means ignoring a significant opportunity to connect with what is still a massive part of the population.

Do as many people pick up a print edition of the newspaper as was the case decades ago when virtually 100% of the local content was consumed in print?

Of course not.

But that number has been declining on a per capita basis since the advent of television!

Today, there are a lot more options for people looking for local news and information. That means the media pie has been sliced into a lot more pieces.

It also means that the pie is much larger than it’s ever been.

In other words, the size of the overall audience and the level of activity have both grown substantially.

And the number of people who look at a newspaper every week is staggering.

But perhaps more importantly, when newspaper readers pick up a newspaper, they are invariably more engaged, less distracted, and more trustful of the information they are consuming than when they access any other media—by a multiple of 3, according to studies on the subject.

Consider this: Metroland Media, one of North America’s largest community newspaper publishers and the largest by far in Ontario, delivers newspapers to 75% of the households in Ontario every week. They have over 5 million weekly print readers, the largest editorial force in the province, and some of the most trusted and long-standing brands in the communities they serve.

The Milton Canadian Champion changed its name when Canada became a country. That’s how long it’s been around.

And as many as 75% of readers will engage with a business after seeing it advertised in the local newspaper on a regular basis.

And we’re not just talking about readers over the age of 65.

We spoke to middle school students about media and trust. The media they said was the most trustworthy? The local newspaper. By far. Sure, they used Snapchat on an hour-by-hour basis. But they had low-trust in it as a source of objective and trustworthy information.

The newspaper, on the other hand, stood for something and was governed by strict publishing guidelines. What’s more, all but a few of the students we spoke to had either been in the newspaper or had delivered it at some point in their lives.

Now that’s a lot of community connections.

Newspapers are one of the few types of media left where ads are considered complementary and are not only tolerated but welcomed as part of the reading experience. Best of all, there are no ad blockers or poor connectivity issues to contend with.

So where do you start when it comes to newspaper advertising?

First, pick an ad design approach that is consistent with your public persona and your target customer group. If you haven’t already defined your persona and target customer, try our free marketing checklist. It’s fast and it’s easy. 

Remember: less is more in advertising, even advertising that is meant to be informative (like a listings ad).

In conclusion…

A consistent newspaper presence throughout the year that’s tightly aligned with your content strategy is an exceptional way to build your personal brand and connect to your community on an ongoing basis.

Want to order a newspaper ad? Click here to use our EZ newspaper ad ordering system.

Click here to join the discussion about this marketing guide in the Agent8 Forum.