The Audit Bureau of Circulations released its most recent report on newspaper circulation in America and the results were not pretty. Circulation was down 5% overall compared with figures from six months ago. Papers at the top of the food chain took major hits. The LA Times was down 8.67%, the NYT down 5.52% and the Washington Post down 6.43%. The Wall Street Journal was the only paper in the top 10 to post gains, growing its circulation by 1.82%.
In California, the San Diego Union-Tribune was down 7.39%, the San Francisco Chronicle got slaughtered, dropping 11.21%, while the San Jose Mercury News stayed flat.
It’s important to note that the rate of decline is slowing and we are projecting it to continue to slow as we carry our strategic plan forward. Since early April, a cross-departmental team has been focused on our Sunday print edition, which is the second largest of any newspaper in the country, behind only the nationally-distributed New York Times. We’ve been better coordinating content of interest to that large readership and have increased our budget for a multimedia marketing campaign that has thus far yielded over 20,000 new home delivery orders and better single copy performance. In fact, September circ figures show Sunday losses of just over 6% and October looks stronger yet.