Zimpapers continues to lead the market in terms of readership and listenership trends for the year 2016, the latest Zimbabwe All Media Products Survey (ZAMPS) presented in Harare yesterday revealed.
The survey — which was conducted in Harare and Bulawayo — shows that in the daily papers’ segment, Zimpapers publications, The Herald and H-Metro, lead the pack in readership, with The Herald coming tops with a readership of 43 percent in 2016, up from 38 percent last year.
H-Metro came second with a readership of 38 percent this year, compared to 30 percent last year, showing growth in terms of readers.
NewsDay, Daily News and the Chronicle bring up the rear in the dailies section.
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The Sunday Mail leads the pack in the weekly newspapers’ segment after growing its readership from 33 percent last year to 43 percent this year.
B-Metro follows with a grab on 18 percent of the readership market.
Zimpapers’ Shona publication Kwayedza grew its readership from eight to 17 percent between 2015 and 2016, showing that more and more readers are enjoying reading their news in one of the country’s national languages.
Manica Post grew its readership by one percent in the period under review, while Sunday News managed a nine percent readership in the weekly newspaper category.
Zimpapers’ new free publication, Suburban introduced barely a year ago, proved the winner by growing its readership from 10 to 66 percent.
Local news proved most popular with readers in the daily and weekly newspaper sections followed by entertainment and business news.
On line readership trends continued to be lower compared to print readership for all the newspapers.
In broadcasting, Zimpapers’ radio station Star FM continued its dominance as the leading radio station of choice. Important to note, however, with Star FM is the growth in listenership from 38 percent last year to 50 percent this year. Star FM was followed by Radio Zimbabwe at 27 percent, same as last year, while Power FM went down to 26 percent from 28 percent in terms of listenership. ZiFM attained 26 percent listenership in 2016 up from 24 percent last year.
Zimpapers group chief executive Mr Pikirayi Deketeke said the latest ZAMPS results prove the fully integrated media house’s position as a market leader in the media business.
“This shows our market dominance as a media group. We remain a credible, tried and tested brand. We are known as a content factory that distributes content through multiple platforms. Most of our products have done well and are growing in terms of appeal to audiences. However, this does not mean we can afford to relax.
“We especially note those of our products whose readership seems to be falling. There is need to examine the issues and work on them so that we can improve the numbers,” he said.
Mr Deketeke, who believes in constantly innovating in an evolving media sector, said he was gratified to note that the free publications recently introduced by Zimpapers, the two Suburban newspapers, were growing in readership within a short space of time. This, he said, proved that the time for free publications was upon the Zimbabwean market.
The Suburban newspapers are freely distributed in the Avondale and Borrowdale areas and are largely driven by advertising. The Avondale edition covers Mt Pleasant, Mabelreign, Marlborough, Westgate, Ridgeview, Milton Park, Strathaven and Bluff Hill suburbs while the Borrowdale edition also covers Highlands, Greendale and Chisipite.
Mr Deketeke congratulated his editors and their teams as well as the Star FM management for the good showing in the latest survey and urged them to work even harder saying once one is in the lead, they should expect greater competition. He said a competitive edge could not be guaranteed beyond a day, hence the race is always on.
The last survey was conducted in October 2015.