Print Newspapers Come Out on Top for Ad Engagement

New research finds that print newspaper advertisements are the most engaging and effective form of advertising

TORONTO — A new study conducted by Totum Research on behalf of News Media Canada has found that printed newspaper ads engage Canadians more than any other medium, print or digital. Specifically, the findings published in the 2019 Local Newspapers: Engaged and Connected Report reveal that advertisement engagement for print newspapers is nearly two times higher than other media formats, which includes television, radio, digital newspapers, magazines, social media and online searches.

“The Local Newspapers: Engaged and Connected study confirms the power of newspaper advertising and will help marketers reconsider advertising in local newspapers across the country.”

“With the sheer volume of ads Canadians see each day, we know that having an engaged audience is crucial for advertising to break through and drive action,” said John Hinds, President and CEO of News Media Canada. “Our research demonstrates that Canadians are paying attention to newspaper ads, likely because of their trusted environment.”

The study also scored all media on ad effectiveness (the degree to which consumers noticed advertising minus the level of annoyance). With an Advertising Effectiveness Score of 77, print newspapers dramatically outranked all other media tested and were the only medium that scored a positive result. For context, TV had an Advertising Effectiveness Score of -7 and social media had a score of -16.

In addition, Millennials in particular scored the highest on both general and news engagement measures with print newspapers. In terms of the advertising engagement measure, printed newspapers ranked second only to the browser search bar.

“It’s clear from this research that when Canadians are reading their local paper, they’re engaging with newspaper ads at a deeper level than they are with other media formats,” says Hinds. “This new information confirms the power of newspaper advertising and, we hope, will help marketers reconsider advertising in local newspapers across the country.”

This new research, paired with the seventh annual Newspapers 24/7 Readership Report, found that newspaper readership in Canada is at an all-time high—with nearly nine out of 10 Canadians reading newspapers on a weekly basis.

The survey was conducted by independent firm Totum Research and was produced with the financial support of the Government of Canada through the Canada Periodical Fund of the Department of Canadian Heritage.

More detail on the study is available at

About News Media Canada

News Media Canada is the voice of the print and digital news media industry in Canada and represents hundreds of trusted titles in every province and territory. News Media Canada is an advocate in public policy for daily and community media outlets and contributes to the ongoing evolution of the news media industry by raising awareness and promoting the benefits of news media across all platforms. For more information, visit our website at or follow us on FacebookTwitterInstagram and YouTube.