Rajat Arora | Delhi | August 25, 2010
West Bengal is an Indian state where only one news paper has registered decline. According to the average issue readership data for West Bengal, most of the dailies have gained some readers in IRS Q2 2010.
No. 1 Bangla daily ‘Anand Bazar Patrika’ has maintained its top spot by gaining just 18,000 readers in IRS Q2 2010. Its current AIR stands at 64.66 lakh as compared to 64.48 lakh in IRS Q1 2010.
Bangla Daily ‘Bartaman’ has strengthened its position at No.2 with 6.1% growth by adding 1.62 lakh readers in the current survey. It has recorded an AIR of 28.11 lakh as compared to 26.49 lakh in last survy findings.
The 3rd major player in West Bengal, ‘Sangbad Pratidin’ has also seen a sharp growth of 6% by adding 62,000 readers in the second quarter of IRS 2010. Its AIR now stands at 11.03 lakh as compared to 10.41 lakh in IRS Q1 2010.
The English daily from Anand Bazar Patrika Group, ‘The Telegraph’ has jumped to the No.4 position in West Bengal by replacing Ganashakti. It has registered 4.3% growth in the 2nd quarter results of IRS. The English daily has recorded an AIR of 10.27 lakh as compared to 9.85 lakh in the last survey findings.
On the other hand ‘Ganashakti’ has become the fifth largest read daily in the state with a sharp decline of 4.5 %. Its AIR stands at 9.6 lakh in IRS Q2 2010 as compared to 10.05 lakh in the last quarter.
At No.6 is ‘Aajkal’ which has registered a marginal growth of 1.7% in its average issue readership. It has recorded an AIR of 7.85 lakh as compared to 7.72 lakh in the previous quarter.
‘The Times of India’ has also added a few readers in West Bengal in IRS Q2 2010 to remain at 7th spot with current AIR of 6.42 lakh.
By registering 11% growth, ‘Sanmarg’ has acquired 8th position in the state which was held by ‘Uttar Banga Sambad’ till the first quarter of IRS 2010. Sanmarg has added 50,000 readers in the second quarter of survey to take its AIR at 5.05 lakh.
‘Uttar Banga Sambad’ has been pushed to 9th spot with a marginal decline in this quarter. Its current AIR stands at 4.95 lakh as compared to 4.97 lakh in the last quarter.
‘Sambad’ holds the 10th spot in the state with 2.92 lakh readers as per the average issue readership data release in the second quarter of IRS 2010. The daily has registered 3.2% of growth.
Average Issue Readership (AIR) of a publication is defined as the number of readers of that publication who have claimed to have last read it within periodicity – i.e. last read a daily yesterday, a weekly within the last week, a monthly within the last month, etc.
This measure is considered to be a more relevant measure of ‘real’ or ‘regular’ readership, especially for newspapers, most of which have been read / ‘consumed’ as matter of daily habit. Conventionally, media planners even calculate & compare cost-benefits of dailies based on the AIR figure. And hence it is perhaps most relevant to study readership trends as well in terms of AIR.