UK newspapers are set to lose almost £400 million in print advertising over the next two years, according to a forecast from a media buying specialist.
The report from Group M said that print media across the board “remain in their own deep recession” with digital advertising revenue making up only a pound for every £5 lost in print.
Regional newspapers will be hit hardest by declining advertising spend, with analysts expecting them to lose more than £200 million by 2014. Group M predicts a 23 per cent fall in classified advertising spend, with display suffering a 17 per cent decline.
National newspapers are expected to see a 14 per cent drop in display advertising, and a 15 per cent in their much smaller classified market.
Adam Smith, future director at Group M and one of the report’s authors, said digital revenue cannot entirely make up for the print shortfall.
“It’s never going to be 100 per cent retrievable because digital is a completely different competitive environment where you have lots of competitors rather than just a few. Media buyers are picking and choosing from a wider selection of alternatives.”
Smith added that, although most newspapers had been slow to pick up on developing products for tablets, they could be “the key to the industry’s survival”.