The stats show that total newspaper ad sales dropped by an unprecedented 28.28% in the first quarter of 2009, a deep plunge that represents a loss of more than $2.6 billion in ad revenue compared year-over-year. Compared to 3 years ago – 2006 was a pretty good year for American newspapers – we’re looking at a drop of more than $4.5 billion in ad sales in just three years if you only take into account the first quarter.
The sharp decline is caused by the lousy state of both digital and dead tree ad sales: the stats posted on the Newspaper Association of America website show that print sales fell by 29.7% in the first three months of this year (to $5.9 billion), while online sales dropped a record 13.4% (to $696.3 million).
There is even a graphic showing the decline fromn the NAA. I can’t imagine this being shocking to anyone, but to see such a steep decline is still startling.
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