Value add at half the price, the end of a market?


Yesterday I got a telemarketing offer for a half price newspapers subscription, delivered to my door from one of the major dailies. Of course I signed up, beats walking to the newsagent and paying double!

The other major daily in Sydney is giving away free copies of its paper with any “value Meal” purchase at a major fast food restaurant. 

There are few examples of such substantial value add at such a deep discount, is this canny marketing, or desperation? 

The power of newspapers is in the value their distribution offers advertisers, but most people buy newspapers to be informed and entertained. The alternatives emerging over the last 5 years to be informed and entertained have profoundly altered the economics of newspapers.

The ABC seems to be grappling with the digital media, perhaps better  than the commercial media, perhaps because it does not have to worry as much about the distribution and advertising revenue. 


The business model of newspapers is going down the gurgler, could it be that these offers are the death throes, or are they just being nice, and saving me a walk.


About strategyaudit

StrategyAudit is a boutique strategy and marketing consultancy concentrating on the challenges of the medium sized manufacturing businesses that make up the backbone of our economy. The particular focus is on their strategic and marketing development. as well as the business and operational efficiency improvements necessary for day to day commercial survival. We not only give advice, we go down "into the weeds" to ensure and enable implementation.
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2 Responses to Value add at half the price, the end of a market?

  1. David says:

    I agree with Jonathan in so much that the current model will and must change to apeal to and be of greater value to a narrower but deeper readership.
    In my view the industry has fallen foul to two common, but in my view not always sound views that:
    1. Price is the only succesful marketing tool – discount or die.
    2. Technology advancement and new technologies are always the best way forward.

    Interesting in a world, “supposedly” focused on environmetal issue we feed an ever increasing hunger for mobile technology to communicate(mobile phones etc) that is a major poluter, and yet some consider inevitable the death of print media?
    Perhaps th e”value offer” in print media could be focussed on what the consumer wants……after all one often hears complaints about the quality and substance of what is in our print press, yet I would be so bold to suggest that many would accept a10 -20% price increase in a daily, IF it delivered on customer expectations…………..
    After all it is just not the same sitting down at Gloria Jeans with our lattes, staring at a mobile phone screen
    When I studied marketing I am sure price was not the only influential component is a successful mix

  2. Jonathan says:

    I feel that the business model is in it death throes! They have been doing the 1/2 price thing for a number of years but it won’t save them. There was an interesting article in the Saturday Herald (yes I still buy the paper) last week highlighting a reduction in the number of dailys being produced in India. I imagine that there will be newspapers around for some time but perhaps not in the currant model and maybe with a narrower but deeper readership with more targeted features

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