Editorial: More people reading voice of community

STEVE MASON, EDITOR
Last updated 08:14 21/02/2014
Express
The Marlborough Express

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More people are reading the Marlborough Express each day, according to audited figures released this week.

The figures also show more people are reading our free weekly papers.

Use of our website and Facebook pages is also growing rapidly.

The audited figures are from Nielsen, the independent company that does annual surveys of newspapers throughout New Zealand.

They show that an average of 54.7 per cent of people 15 and above in Marlborough read the Express each day last year.

That's a total of 21,000 people, which is a 5 per cent increase on 2012.

The audit also shows that 30,000 people each week read at least one edition of the paper, which is up 11 per cent.

The number of people reading Marlborough news online at mex.co.nz each day has also increased markedly during the year - from 3060 in 2012 to 7250 last year.

In total they clicked on 8.8 million items on the site, up from 6.4 million.

The news is also spread widely through our Facebook page. During the first week of February, 4100 people visited the page an average of three times each.

(These numbers recorded online are not audited by Nielsen.)

The growth continues in readership figures for the free community papers, which are audited.

An average of 29,000 people are reading Marlborough Midweek each week, which is 78.5 per cent of the adult population, and up 3.6 per cent on 2012.

The readership for Saturday Express also sits at 29,000, or 76 per cent of the market.

The audit is the number of people, based on sample surveys, who tell the researchers they read these papers.

It is not just the number of papers printed and delivered free.

These readership rates are among the highest in the country for regional daily newspapers.

We are delighted with the increase in readership, which tells us that people use the Express and its associated news feeds each day as their main source of news and information about Marlborough.

General manager Vanessa Watson said yesterday that 2013 had been a huge year for Marlborough news, including earthquakes, local body elections and health service issues.

"So it's very satisfying to see this readership growth both in print and on our website as people to stay in touch with what's happening here."

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- The Marlborough Express

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