Friday, March 11, 2011

No Comeback for Newspaper Classified Ads?

Why your newspaper's editorial board is increasingly echoing his masters' voice.

Will Classified Advertising Come Back? (Editor & Publisher, 3/9/2011)

Excerpt:   While classified advertising delivered more than 40 percent of newspaper revenues as recently as 2000, want ads produced barely 22 percent of the industry's revenues by the end of 2010 - the lowest contribution in 50 years. To put it another way, the classified crash was responsible for 58 percent of the drop in revenues that brought total newspaper ad sales to some $26 billion at the end of 2010 from an all-time high of $49.4 billion in 2005.

Now that the economy is - sort of - on the mend, the big question for publishers is how much the classified advertising market will rebound. Although economic upswings historically have reinvigorated classified advertising, this time may be different.

The principal reasons that classifieds may never regain their former strength are that people are hunting for jobs, buying cars, and shopping for homes in decidedly different ways today than they did even five years ago. They have moved to the Web. And employers, car dealers, and real estate agents are enthusiastically following them

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