4 February, 2013

New Zealand’s best performing Sunday newspaper, the Herald on Sunday, will re-launch with a fresh and contemporary new look on 17 February 2013.

The only New Zealand newspaper to grow circulation in the past 12 months, the APN-owned title is aiming to take its next step up in quality to better satisfy its growing readership.

“We are making a complete revamp of the paper’s look and feel, and improving the content mix which will keep it at the top of its game,” said editor Bryce Johns announcing the changes today.

The Herald on Sunday has out-performed its competitors in both readership and circulation growth since launch in 2004 and currently has a 48% readership lead against its main rival in its core circulation area north of Taupo.

The new-look Herald on Sunday will maintain its stapled news section which has proved a popular feature of the newspaper, and include an improved lifestyle and entertainment magazine, Living, as well as a new stand-alone real estate section, Homes.

Johns said the new Herald on Sunday aimed to build on its strong spot news focus as well as its ability to break news stories and highlight the people, personalities and circumstances behind them. 

Some of the newspaper’s "bigger reads", like the campaigns for ‘2 drinks max’ and ‘Clean up our beaches’, will be moved earlier in the book.

Readers have told us they want these sort of campaigns and the in-depth, investigative work done by our journalists to be better displayed and promoted, which we will do, Johns said.

Living will also have a new design and reader favourites from the current View section, including Spy, TV listings and movie reviews, will be incorporated in a more comprehensive “weekend lifestyle” liftout.

And on top of this, the new Homes section will deliver aspirational feature properties and listings to an engaged audience of active and passive buyers.

Extensive consumer testing –  similar to that carried out for the New Zealand Herald compact launch in September last year – has resulted in everything that Herald on Sunday readers enjoy  being retained, while new content perfect for a leisurely Sunday, will be introduced.

Many people tested said there was more depth and relevance than they had expected in the Herald on Sunday, and a more contemporary layout takes advantage of that material.

“It’s got a good clean feel to it, a better layout,’’ one reader said.  Another said:  “You feel like you are going to read something substantial, it is refreshing.’’

Johns said: “Feedback from our readers to the new look and feel has been exceptional. The new design helps us highlight the quality work of our journalists while maintaining the accessible and warm tone that readers are looking for in a Sunday newspaper.”

Commenting on the change, Martin Simons, Chief Executive, APN New Zealand Media, said “After the successful re-launch of the week-day edition of the New Zealand Herald in September last year, we wanted to continue with our programme of product improvement and innovation by re-launching the Herald on Sunday with a fresh, new look. The new design is modern and changes to content have been made to meet the needs of Sunday readers for an easy, relaxing, Sunday newspaper that delivers a broad range of content with substance.”

The new look Herald on Sunday launches on 17 February.  Further details around the launch and changes to the paper will be announced over the next two weeks.

 

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For more information please contact:

 

Martin Simons, CEO, APN New Zealand

T: +64 9 373 6455

E: martin.simons@apn.co.nz

 

Bryce Johns, Editor, Herald on Sunday

T: +64 9 373 9321

E: bryce.johns@apn.co.nz