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Why Newspaper Ads Doesn’t Work Today?

Newspaper Ads have been the conventional, go-to form of advertising for many years now. However, in the age of digitalization and advertising in the form of SEO-advertisements (Search Engine Optimization), tech institutions such as Facebook, Google and Instagram hold the reins in the sphere of advertisement, leaving newspapers far behind. Here are 8 reasons Why Newspaper Ads Don’t Work Today.

Popularity Of Online Newspapers

According to this article by PrintWeek, about 40% of global internet users now read news online, choosing to cut out their physical newspaper subscriptions. Global news outlets such as The New York Times, CNN, BBC and many more have a huge online readership worldwide, and even local news outlets such as The Star, Malaysia’s top English-language daily, cater to many readers online, with The Star having about 170,000 online followers on Instagram.

Decrease In Population Who Read Newspapers

Owing to not just the popularity of online newspapers but also the rise in mobile applications that supply short news reads such as InShorts, which offers 60 word-news reads, there is a fall in the number of people globally who read physical newspapers. This affects the reach that your advertisements have and makes your audience limited in size.

Appeal Of Digital Ads To The Youth

The appeal of digital advertising is higher to the youth, who are more active on and comfortable using social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Newspaper Ads don’t reach the youth because they are more attracted to social media advertising and do not read physical newspapers, opting to read online news instead.

Limitations In Type And Scope Of Advertisements

When it comes to the types of advertisements that a newspaper can support, it can only publish text and images as the medium of advertisements. Compared to video, auditory and interactive advertisements online through digital advertising, newspaper ads become uninteresting and fail to hold or even draw the attention of their audiences.

Moreover, with features such as Insights on Instagram that let the advertiser know their reach and learn which time of the day their audiences are most active and what sort of advertisements attract audiences the most, newspapers become just singular sheets of paper that do not offer any such knowledge to the advertisers, forcing them to guess what their reach could be like based on newspaper circulation and subscribership, which is uncertain.

High Scale Competition From Digital Ads

In view of many readers choosing to read news online as well as the huge popularity of digital advertising, the sheer level of competition that newspaper ads have to face against online advertising is very high. Newspaper ads fail to make as much revenue to the advertiser as online ads do, fail to attract as big an audience as online ads do and thus, become imminent failures in the face of the competition from digital advertising.

Low Reach, Interaction And Engagement

Newspaper ads garner low interaction and engagement because the actions that are required to be taken such as noting down and calling the phone number on the ad, emailing the advertiser, following directions to go to the location that is being advertised and so on are complicated and require time and repeated liaison with other people, thus making the entire process tiring.

As compared to online ads that only require the click of the mouse or the tap of the finger, these newspaper ads seem very ancient and complex indeed. Moreover, the availability of newspapers in remote areas is very low, as they are not available by any conventional mode of transport.

This becomes a disadvantage for advertisers using newspapers, because even these areas have internet connections which make it much more plausible to use digital advertising than newspaper advertising.

Lack Of Individualization And High Cost Of Advertising

As opposed to how ads are personalized to each advertiser in digital advertising and at reasonable pricing, the cost of advertising through newspapers is significantly higher though smaller ads get lost in the clutter of news and media in newspapers, and full-length, one-page glossy ad prints are very expensive.

The revenue that stems from these advertisements is rarely enough to generate profits, much less make ends meet. Additionally, newspaper ads are written keeping the general population in mind and do not strike a chord with individual users as compared to online ads that are formulated using each individual’s browsing history, thus gaining higher appeal since they are catered to each individual.

Increasing Digitization Of The Economy

With increased digitization of every aspect of life, the value that newspapers hold is steadily decreasing. Most newspaper subscribers barely skim through the newspapers, only looking at headlines and ignoring advertisements. In comparison, SEO advertising and social media advertising compels users to look at advertisements in the form of promotions and influencer-based marketing, thus not only reaching a wider audience but also having confirmed viewership of advertisements.

With more and more advertisers opting to go online today, newspaper ads have steadily become more and more obsolete, thus rendering high costs and expenses but garnering low returns to the advertisers. They have failed to garner the most engagement and attract big audiences. Thus, newspaper ads are simply lackluster and fail to make much impact today, in light of the steep competition curve they face from digital and social media advertising.


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