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Repositioned Target Market Demographics
The target market for newspapers is traditionally persons 15 years and above. However, this is the generalized market. Newspaper positioning entails dissemination of information to masses. However, as noted before, this appeal is declining because of the entry of internet, which aids in quick dissemination of information. This has greatly reduced the influence of a printed newspaper (Farhoomand, 2007).
To remain relevant appropriate repositioning is required. Printed newspapers need to have particular themes that slightly deviate from the traditional role of disseminating information while keeping that role alive. The product needs to have other appeals because by the time a newspaper reports about certain events, many people will have known about them through internet (Farhoomand, 2007).
According to US census data, close to 65% of all people in the United States use internet daily for at least one purpose: check mail, communicate, and search for information, among others. A large number of those people use internet to know about the happenings around them (US Department of Commerce 2012).
The printed newspaper needs to have investigative reports, discourses on social issues such as health, fitness, crime, and government. Much overhaul should also be directed towards readjusting the newspapers to fit the urgency with which the current generation attaches to things. Additionally, instead of using traditional reporters, the newspapers may revert to engaging everyone. This participation may help in making the stories friendlier to the consumer (US Department of Commerce 2012).
Types of Research Needed to Reposition this Product
To reposition the traditional newspaper successfully, relevant stakeholders need to carry out extensive research to understand the market. First, it is imperative to understand the young generation that is more inclined towards using internet.
The age group of 0 to 45 years has the most practical understanding of internet technology. This is because they either were born in the internet age or were there when the internet revolution occurred. The characteristics that define this age group are fundamental in any meaningful repositioning.
The above qualitative research should be accompanied by relevant quantitative research to have a comprehensive outlook. For example, understanding how quickly newspapers’ readership is declining is crucial in forming a decision.
A research may be carried out to ascertain what percentage of the population still buys a newspaper and the reason for doing that. If they buy newspapers because they find business links, find obituaries, or the newspapers have information that is more credible, this is exactly how the newspaper should plan to market itself to the masses (Pew Research Center 2012).
Methods to Use to Increase Adoption Rates
Various methods may be used to shore up adoption rates of the traditional newspaper. First, it is important to ensure that there is a thorough understanding of the target market. This will ensure that the needs of that market are adequately met. Second, the newspaper as it is currently issued needs to change.
Statistics show that most people are increasingly adopting use of internet. The internet has compounded an already sophisticated consumer base. To understand this demographic, it is imperative for the stakeholders to carry out extensive research (US Department of Commerce 2012).
Third, I would make it interesting to read newspapers by deviating from the traditional role of giving information plainly. Other additional features may be incorporated to make reading a newspaper more interesting. This may include attached music CDs that are specifically tailored to a certain population whose characteristics have already been studied. For example, a CD with pictures of a cost friendly travel destination for people in college may be attractive (Pew Research Center 2012).
Fourth, as many pundits may have noted, information is supposed to be freely disseminated. Hence, I would deviate from selling newspapers and instead give them free to strategic markets segments. That way I would concentrate on selling advertising space and my selling point would be the credibility and quality associated with the newspaper. I will also bargain on the massive readership when looking for advertisers.
Last, I would concentrate on making weekend editions quite interesting with a mixture of social, political, human interest, and analysis stories. This is because, according to US Census data, people read those editions at almost twice the rate they read weekday editions (US Department of Commerce 2012). In addition, the media houses need to stop selling newspapers. Many people believe that it is less costly to have an online subscription.
Even in the traditional set up it was rare for an individual to pay for news (Pew Research Center 2012). Hence, media houses in the newspaper print business need to concentrate on other revenue generating options such as advertising and selling media spaces. They will have a more credible appeal to customers since they will tout the massive and free circulation. However, to do this the newspaper must be popular. Otherwise it may risk been labeled a hoax by people who view free things as such (Farhoomand, 2007).
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Effect of New Service Component in the Interest of this Product
As noted before, traditional newspapers are quickly adapting to the rapid changes in the market to ensure that they remain relevant. Part of what they are doing is ensuring that information is availed to the audience as soon as it is available. They have created social media accounts to offer live updates of any happenings as they unfold.
However, this is not enough to generate renewed interest. The only thing that this diversification has offered is credibility and quality associated with reporters. Hence, in a situation where everyone is reporting an incident, the reporters will be trusted more than any other person will (US Department of Commerce 2012).
One of the major characteristics of a newspaper is the fact that it travels through wide geographical areas to reach the market. A new product may be unveiled to accompany newspapers as they travel these long distances to at the same cost and resource allocation. For example, a media house may enjoin delivery of packages with newspaper deliveries.
This service will be quite effective in a localized geographical location. However, it may not be effective with long distances. In addition, since it comes with the delivery of newspapers it may work towards saving costs (Farhoomand, 2007).
Although this service may not beat market leaders in courier business such as EMS and DHL, it may work for the convenience of business people with a constant need to make package deliveries across towns on a daily basis. This will create loyalty and will help to make a case to potential advertisers about the potential of the edition in the market. Hence, it will attract more business (Farhoomand, 2007).
Most Likely Distribution Problems and Ways to Address Them
Even currently, newspaper sellers encounter a number of distribution problems. The major problem is the need to create a network of committed people to ensure that the newspapers reach the target audience. These people need to be committed to ensure that they work abnormal hours. This entails waking up quite early to ensure that everyone has a newspaper at their doorstep in the morning (Pew Research Center 2012).
It is also imperative to note that distributing a single newspaper to various households every morning may be tiresome and somewhat redundant. It also comes with numerous logistical problems. For example, delivery vehicles may breakdown. Additionally, the weather is always unpredictable and may curtail successful deliveries.
In distributing a newspaper, many aspects are involved. It is crucial to keep a database of the places to deliver a newspaper. This database may change often, especially at this time when internet subscription is hype. A change in the database needs to be reflected to the men on the ground for effective distribution. This may create a logistical problem (Farhoomand, 2007).
The above scenario brings back the fact that information need not be sold. An edition needs to carry out a careful study that identifies exactly the number of people that read newspapers constantly and deliver such papers free (Farhoomand, 2007). It is important to note that no huge deviation exists in the number of occasional newspapers readers compared to those that read newspapers on a daily basis in United States. The only deviation comes about when the weekend editions are considered (Pew Research Center 2012).
Farhoomand, A. (2007). Strategic Repositioning of a Newspaper. Web.
Pew Research Center. (2012). State of the News Media 2012. Web.
US Department of Commerce. (2012). United States Census: Information and Communications. Web.