Survey shows value of regional papers

Regional newspapers are claiming to offer a route to advertisers seeking to address the problem of ad avoidance.

Just 17 per cent of readers skip over ads in local newspapers, compared with 47 per cent of TV viewers. Some 27 per cent of national newspaper readers skip advertising, according to the Media Context Project commissioned by the Newspaper Society and conducted by GfK NOP.

The study, of more than 5,000 consumers, also revealed that just 14 per cent of people would prefer it if their local newspaper did not contain any advertising, compared with more than half of TV viewers and 37 per cent of radio listeners. And 83 per cent of regular local newspaper readers respond to advertising within the titles.

Radio also emerged well from the study with just 17 per cent of respondents saying they try to avoid ads.

Robert Ray, the marketing director of the Newspaper Society, said: "Media and communications strategies often fail even to consider the local press.

Yet here is a medium that is not only dynamic in its scale and portfolio, but has a unique relationship with people across all life stages."