Compact Newspapers

Compact news considerations

Proposed changes to the traditional newspaper format of the Sydney Morning Herald and The Age by Fairfax CEO Greg Hywood have caused waves in the marketing world and left advertising opinions divided.

Whilst some marketing experts support the bid for new ‘compact’ tabloid sized editions on weekdays others such as Head of MediaCom Nick Sheenan aren’t welcoming the changes with quite so open arms.

“The strict commercial reality to this question is that advertisers will not pay a like-for-like cost for less space,” he says.

Head of Print at OMD Simon Davies believes however the changes to the cumbersome broadsheet are due and says that as long as audience numbers continue to be delivered then a change in size won’t impact on advertising spend.

“Over the last few years, most broadsheets have successfully changed format without losing market share. The ease of reading the compact format is likely to be seen as a benefit to readers,” he says.

CEO of PHD Barry O’Brien supports Davies opinion, taking a lighter approach to the changes of the beloved SMH and standing to embrace a new age in technology.

“I used to be really precious about the SMH as it is an institution in this city, but the game has moved on in leaps and bounds.

“All I would say to Greg Hywood and co is just don’t bugger up the content of the paper, and maintain the editorial integrity as you have for 180-plus years and all should be sweet,” O’Brien says.

Source: B&T Magazine – September 2011

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