Regional news media has almost twice the trust of television and radio, a new report into the sector has found.
The “Think Local Regional News Media Report” also found 54 per cent of respondents considered regional newspapers a trusted source of information, followed by television at 29 per, radio at 27 per and online search at 18 per.
Regional newspapers were also the most engaging source of information, with readers 1.4 times more likely to find their regional newspaper more engaging than TV, 1.6 times that of radio and 2.9 that of letterbox dropped catalogues and flyers.
Regional news media reaches 3.9 million residents in regional Australia, according to data from emma (Enhanced Media Metrics Australia).
The Think Local Regional News Media Report was commissioned by The Newspaper Works and conducted by Research Now among 1440 respondents. It asked respondents about their local newspaper reading to better understand the role newspapers play in readers’ lives, and to compare this with how readers use other media.
The Newspaper Works will publish a five-week series detailing additional findings from the report over the coming weeks.
Think Local Regional News Media Report also found that regional newspapers were readers’ number one source of information on local business, the most influential media for shopping and buying decisions and an essential connection to the readers’ local community.
The Newspaper Works CEO Mark Hollands said regional newspapers continued to play a unique and valuable role.
“This research confirms that communities have a close and trusting relationship with their paper which creates a highly effective advertising environment,” Mr Hollands said.
“Readers also overwhelmingly turn to their local newspaper to stay informed about issues affecting their area, events in their region and to get practical, relevant information.”
When it comes to providing information about their local communities and how to find businesses and services in their area, regional newspapers outperformed every other media at 77 per cent. This compares with just 30 per cent for radio, 24 per cent for catalogues/flyers and 22 per cent for television. In addition, regional newspapers ranked number one for influencing shopping and buying behaviour at 37 per.
Regional news media readers are four times more likely to be high income earners than non-readers, with 41 per cent earning $80,000 or more per annum, making newspapers a source of high-value customers.
The Nielsen Global Trust in Advertising Report, released last September, found that newspapers were also the most trusted medium for ads.
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