Distribution of a British national daily newspaper

Abstract:

We are accustomed to think of a newspaper as a medium of advertising. We sometimes forget that a daily newspaper is a commodity in itself and as one of the most perishable of consumer goods it presents some very special problems. It is manufactured during the night and is on sale for a part of the following day. After this time it is of very little value to the consumer. Like most products it has regular and occasional buyers. It is distributed nationally though 1 ,200 wholesalers and 40,000 retailers, and is promoted and advertised in much the same way as other goods. Demand is seasonal, with sudden bursts whenever major news events occur. Decisions on volume of production and distribution have to be taken every night. A newspaper with an expansionist policy must of course provide opportunities for chance purchasers and must incur the costs of over production. Even with a static circulation policy the fluctuation in demand for the newspaper would lead to the imperfect matching of supply and demand.

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