The New Day one week in: A promising start but it needs more resources to flourish at 50p - Press Gazette

The New Day one week in: A promising start but it needs more resources to flourish at 50p

One week in to the launch of The New Day and you would need a heart of stone not to wish the new title every success.
But my hunch is that Trinity Mirror will need to give it more editorial resources if they are to make a go of it.
At 25p it feels like reasonable value, but at 50p it will struggle to compete with titles which have so much more spent on their editorial content.
Early trade estimates suggests a day two sale of 150,000. I suspect Trinity would be delighted with that if it held steady to today. It would be a handy platform to build to their target of 200,000 plus.
But it is far too early to make any conclusions.  We will know where we are when the first audited figures are revealed by ABC next month.
My local newsagent claims to have two The New Day buyers (versus 50 who take the Daily Mail and eight Daily Mirrors). But that said, when I spoke to one of those buyers she raved about it saying that she particuarly enjoyed the political balance and proudly said that she made sure she bought it every day.
In her editor's letter today, Alison Phillips says: "I never imagined it would be easy launching a newspaper but if I'd known it would have been quite this tricky I might have stayed at home to wash my hair." With 25 editorial staff she is performing a daily miracle just getting the newspaper out.
As I understand it many of the staff are "page creators" meaning they do everything from writing the stories, to laying them out, writing headlines and checking for legals. While this may seem like a brave new world to Trinity Mirror bosses, the reality is that it will put huge strain on the editor and her deputy to ensure the paper comes out each day without too many howlers.
My personal view of The New Day it is still like the curate's egg. It has published some worthwhile investigations and features that you wouldn't read anywhere else. The balanced political debate features and explainers are excellent and a clear selling point. And it is bursting with good ideas.
But it needs resources if it is to grow and flourish from this promising start.
Finally here are two hopefully constructive observations for Trinity Mirror.
I'm not sure why The New Day isn't distributed in Scotland (with the exception of Edinburgh). It's very different from  the Daily Record and I don't think the Scottish are so different from the Welsh and English that they wouldn't enjoy it. There was a lovely feature yesterday about how Syrian asylum seekers have settled on the Island of Bute and it was a shame that no-one there got to read it.
The digital strategy is willfully rubbish. Why? The idea of doing away with a website and existing only on social media is a good one, if done well. But The New Day's Twitter and Facebook accounts appear to be cobbled together by existing staff who, frankly, have probably got enough on.
The New Day needs to find a way to make the best of its content available digitally after publication so that people can share and comment on it online and spread the word. As well as providing nearly free marketing it will help editors get a clear idea of what's working and what isn't.



Press Gazette's must-read weekly newsletter featuring interviews, data, insight and investigations.

Author: Dominic Ponsford

Dominic Ponsford is the editor of Press Gazette