1. The Hindu is the fastest growing English daily – A Family run daily strengthening its market stand
As for the ‘English reading’ population of the nation, Hindu is the fastest growing English daily, growing at a rate of 3.27%. The effects of Hindu’s ‘Stay Ahead with Hindu’ campaign might be seen as the reason for the increase in its readers by about 70,000. However, still nowhere near TOI’s fan base. English dailies Deccan Chronicles, Economic Times and The Tribune have lost readers marginally.
2. The biggest gainer during the IRS 2011 Q4 was a Hindi Daily – the Patrika
The biggest jump in readership was of 357,000 achieved by Patrika which toppled Nai Duniya to take the 9th position. It might even surpass The Hindu in next two quarters if the current growth rate continues.
3. Competitive exams sell more magazines – Samanya Gyan Darpan’s surprise entry in the top 10 magazines opens new door for advertisers
Samanya Gyan Darpan is a surprise entry in the list of top 10 magazines in this IRS quarter. From no circulation data up until last quarter, this magazine has picked up quite a circulation to enter the top 5 most read magazines. This monthly competition magazine priced at Rs. 35/- has reached 1,678,000 readers to hold the 4th place, while all the top 3 magazines including Pratiyogita Darpan have lost readers.
Although Pratiyogita Darpan (a known competition study magazine) has lost about 25,000 readers, yet the market of general knowledge magazines targeting the competition exam aspirants is growing strongly.
In this competitive market it is becoming increasingly difficult for print publications to hold their readers who are swaying towards online media. The only English weekly on the list of top 10 magazines remains India Today, which has lost about 25,000 readers this quarter. The only magazines to chart an increase were Meri Saheli, General knowledge Today and a Bengali weekly – Karmakshetra.
4. Language Magazines are on a rise – Malayalam Fortnightly is the most read magazine, India Today stands 5th
One noticeable statistic in the IRS 2011 Q4 is the top 10 magazines. Once again the vernaculars rule and the fortnightly Malayalam language magazine Vanitha is at the top of the list of vernacular magazines. It has 905,000 more readers than the top English magazine India Today. India Today and General Knowledge Today are the only two English magazines that make it to the list. Although Vanitha too has lost marginal readers it is still ahead of the second Vernacular magazine Malayala Manorama, by 1,300,000 readers. The Bengali language daily, Ananda Bazar Patrika lost 49,000 readers. Telegu daily Eenadu, Tamil daily Dinakaran and Gujarat Samachar have lost marginal numbers as well. While remianing 6, in the top 10 – have improved their readership giving hope to the vernacular print media.
5. Times of India is still the only English daily in top 10 but it fails to be in top 5 – Far behind the vernaculars
Quite interestingly the Times of India is still the only English daily in top 10 but it fails to be in top 5 which are all either Hindi or language publications. With the current rates of growth TOI might break into the top 5 publications by replacing Amar Ujala by the Q4 of 2013 if Patrika does not maintain its growth. Malayala Manorama remains the top language daily and it is ahead of the top English daily TOI by 2,321,000 readers. However TOI ranks better than the second most popular language daily Lokmat by 54,000 readers and that gap does not seem likely to be lessened over the next four quarters, with its current growth rate. India is still pretty much, a vernacular country as per the preference of language dailies such as Lokmat, Daily Thanthi, and Malayala Manorama which have taken on more readers.
6. Readers of top Hindi dailies might be shifting to other publications – better content may be the driving force behind Hindustan’s popularity
It is interesting to note that the three major Hindi dailies have lost readers while papers like Hindustan and Amar Ujala have gained readers. It might suggest a switch from the top Hindi dailies to a newspaper that was founded in 1918 by luminaries like Dr. Rajendra Prasad and a newspaper started in Agra in 1948. These dailies have only recently started expanding, in regions earlier dominated by the ‘Dainik’ twins. Amongst the top 10 publications, the top two, ie. Dainik Jagran and Dainik Bhaskar, have lost AIR (Average Issue Readership) along with Rajasthan Patrika which is on number 9.
Written by Koustubh Bhattacharya for Image Management.