How Can You Actually Measure the Cost of Print Advertising?

How Can You Actually Measure the Cost of Print Advertising?
  • Newspaper advertising is a great way to attract customers for a specific niche and with specific traits.
  • Print ads are relatively cheap, have a big coverage and, depending on your target audience, can deliver good results and return on investment. Similarly, glossy magazines tend to attract an audience with similar interests and have a longer shelf life.
  • Read this article to find out magazine and local newspaper advertising costs, and learn how to measure print ad costs to increase the return for your business.

effective print ads

Newspaper ads are capable of targeting a customer base within a specific area. Since many small businesses rely on local patronage for their business, newspaper advertising is of a big help to them. These are also relatively inexpensive and can be changed quickly.

However, newspaper prints are not as sharp as glossy print ads, limiting the use of high-resolution photos and complex graphics. The effectiveness of the ad can also be constrained by the paper’s readership on the day it runs and by the section in which it appears.

Unlike newspaper ads, magazines don’t specifically target a certain location. However, magazines have longevity because magazine ads last for a month or even longer, depending on how long the owner or subscriber holds on to that issue. Also, magazines focus on customers with similar interests, making it easier to focus your ad among those who are interested in your field.

Print Media & Newspaper and Advertising Costs 

Here are a few examples of local newspaper advertising costs and other print media publications and their standard and contract rates:

1. Metropolitan Newspaper Advertisements

Metropolitan newspapers publish one national and 15 daily and Sunday newspapers, these newspapers offer editorial coverage in every state with titles that truly reflect Australian life and the communities they serve. To give you an idea, below is an example of advertising rates for a popular metropolitan newspaper, The Courier:

b. The Courier

The Courier advertising rates

The Courier Advertising Rates (Saturday)

2. Local Newspaper Advertisements

Local community newspapers cover local issues, events and news that matter to specific communities. It compromises 112 publications covering the six major capital cities. The cost to advertise in community newspapers can start from as little as $600 for a full-page ad.

3. Regional Newspaper Advertisements

These regional newspapers cover all of the major regional cities of Australia and also the highest-selling rural titles. Here are some examples of regional newspapers contract rates:

a. The Canberra Times (full-page)

  • Mon - Fri: 6,186.58
  • Sat: $7,465.39
  • Sun: $7,045.72

4. National Newspaper Advertisements

National newspapers are sold nationwide. But how much does a newspaper ad cost nowadays? Below are the advertising rates of some of the most popular national newspapers:

 The Daily Telegraph       
 Expenditure level
Excl GST 
Double page spread  $46,544.67 $4,654.47 $51,199.14
Full page $23,978.40 $2,397.84 $26,376.24 
Half page spread $25,386.41 $2,538.64 $27,925.05
Half page vert/hor  $14,390.13 $14,39.01  $15,829.14 
Third page strip $10,789.25  $1,078.93  $11,868.17 
Quarter page $7,756.93  $775.69  $8,532.62 
 The Advertiser       
Excl GST 
Boomer  $720.00 $72.00 $792.00
HIT $38.90 $2,397.84 $26,376.24 
Taste $25,386.41 $2,538.64 $27,925.05
Your Money $14,390.13 $14,39.01  $15,829.14 
SA Business Journal  $10,789.25  $1,078.93  $11,868.17 
Weekend Guide $7,756.93  $775.69 


a. Sydney Morning Herald (full-page ad)

  • Mon - Fri: $70,752
  • Sat: 88,480

b. The Australian (full-page)

  • Mon - Fri: $51,680
  • Sat: $92,072

c. The Age (full-page)

  • Mon - Fri: $54,400
  • Sat: $81,184
  • Sun: $59,104


The cost of effective print ads in a newspaper or magazine can range from relatively inexpensive to overpriced, depending on the size of the ad. Small circulation newspapers offer advertisements for at least $70. An ad in a mass circulated magazine, however, can cost thousands of dollars.

Always remember that publications offer discounts and contracts for multiple run advertisers. 

Wendy Huang

Full Time Blogger and YouTuber at A Custom Blog in 4 Minutes

I am passionate about helping businesses get online with their own blog or website in just a simple 4 minutes.

Comments (2)
Phil Khor

Phil Khor, Founder at

Regarding print media advertising costs, I’d like to elaborate more on national and local newspaper advertising costs based on my research.

The costs will vary based on a few factors:
·       First, is their circulation and readership numbers. Popular papers such as Daily Telegraph, Sydney Morning Herald in NSW, The Australian, The Age in VIC, Courier Mail in QLD and the Advertiser in SA have some of the highest readership and circulation numbers in Australia. Their prices as you can imagine, will be higher.
·       Next, the advertisement cost will vary between weekdays, Saturday and Sunday. In Australia, Sunday papers tend to have the highest circulation, followed by Saturday and then weekdays. Sunday Telegraph, Sunday Herald Sun have the highest circulation overall. Therefore, placing an ad in a weekday paper is cheaper than on a Sunday.
·       The cost also depends on the size of the ad, whether full page, half page, or smaller boxes, and on which page it is placed in. Page 1 and certain sections command a higher price. There’s also another option, which is newspaper inserts. They are not ads printed in the paper, but are separate ads that accompanies the newspaper, usually in the form of a foldable paper.
·       Newspaper advertising can also be flexible. You can choose to run your ads nationally, called a full run, or only in certain states or only in newspaper circulated in city areas, which will affect the prices. Community newspapers are another alternative if you are targeting local businesses.
Discounts will apply the more you spend and the more frequent your ads appear. Obviously, you won’t be getting much exposure running a small ad once in the newspaper. You should be running your ad for several weeks or months which will get you discounts.
If you’re asking for actual cost of a newspaper advertisement, the cheapest will, of course, be a one-off small advertisement in a specific circulation, not nationwide. That will run in the few hundreds to a $1000+. Full page ads will range from $20,000 to $80,000 for a one-off advertisement, depending on the paper.

Print media advertising can still be effective if you know your target audience. It’s easy to dismiss a webpage when you’re surfing especially when you have many browser tabs open. But print media such as newspaper and magazines have a stickier effect than online webpages. 

Aishah Mustapha

Aishah Mustapha, Content Marketer at

If you're interested, here is The Age's latest rate card with all the local newspaper advertising costs for their newspapers and magazines: