Alternative Newspapers Turn In Strong ’03

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By: E&P Staff

National advertising in the nation’s alternative newspapers rose significantly in 2003, according to the industry’s two main rep firms, with one company reporting double-digit gains.

New Times’ Ruxton Group — which represents 28 papers such as the Chicago Reader and Phoenix New Times — experienced a 17% spike over 2002. And the Alternative Weekly Network, which coordinates ad buys for more than 100 weeklies, reported a 6% increase.

“We’ve had two of our best months of the year the last two months, which is encouraging in terms of setting a strong trend and establishing some momentum going into 2004,” AWN’s John Morrison said in a statement.

Traditionally strong categories such as alcohol and tobacco continued to dominate. Those categories were supported by financial, media and automotive.

“Since spring of 2003, we’ve seen national advertisers recognize the strength of alternative newsweeklies at an ever-increasing rate,” added New Times President Michele Laven.

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