Title page for ETD etd-10242009-020020

Type of Document Master's Thesis
Author Harris, Earl D.
URN etd-10242009-020020
Title Analysis of potential system improvements concepts for Sunday newspaper insert packaging
Degree Master of Science
Department Systems Engineering
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Triantis, Konstantinos P. Committee Chair
Blanchard, Benjamin S. Jr. Committee Member
Hawes, Richard Committee Member
  • Advertising fliers
Date of Defense 1994-04-04
Availability restricted
The newspaper industry is undergoing changes to its' revenue base that appear to be leading the industry away from its traditional mission. Throughout history newspapers have had a mission to research, print and deliver news. The better a newspaper was at presenting the news, the greater its' circulation, the greater its' circulation the more revenue it could generate from printed advertisements. Indeed, until the 1970's all of a newspaper's revenues were tied to its' printing process. Beginning in the late 1960's, newspapers began to insert pre-printed advertisements into their products. This inserting has continued to grow steadily over the past twenty years. Recently the growth rate of advertising revenue generated by many major newspaper's internal printed advertising has become stagnant. Meanwhile newspaper inserting revenue continues to grow steadily and it appears that the newspapers are facing the possible need to re-define their mission. This new mission appears to be: "to distribute varieties of desirable printed products to subscribers." The word "desirable" is key. Advertisers want to direct their information to market "niches" and correspondingly, the advertiser wants to reach only the reader segments most likely to respond positively to the advertisement, i.e. make a purchase.

One important facility that gives newspapers a potential advantage over other distributors of printed matter is the newspaper's delivery system. Unlike products delivered through the mail, a newspaper's circulation organization can deliver printed material within as little as a twenty-four hour notice. This research will examine certain production process changes that could potentially take advantage of a modern newspaper's production and distribution strengths.

The research considers trends in magazine production and models a number of production line scenarios that have the potential of enhancing revenue by inserting greater varieties of pre-prints into an individually addressed package. It lists a number of changes that will probably be required for many design up-grade and recommends future research that would lead to a possible major change in business strategy.

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