Daily News, Fingaz eclipse rivals again

HARARE - Zimbabwe's two most iconic newspaper brands — the Daily News and the Financial Gazette — continue to outshine their competition in their respective market segments.

This is according to the latest report — for the second half of 2018 — of the independent Zimbabwe All Media Products Survey (Zamps).

The Zamps’ statistics show that the Daily News continues to perform strongly, with its share of the national daily print readership standing at eight percent during the period, compared to Newsday’s six percent.

Government-controlled The Herald and its stablemate, the Chronicle, are at 11 percent and five percent respectively.

The Daily News also continues to be the only national newspaper which scores consistently highly across the country’s 10 provinces, and in both urban and rural areas as well — with its competitors tending to do well only in some regions, and not nationally.

In terms of the sections that draw thousands of readers to its pages every, the Daily News — the country’s most influential newspaper by far — also continues to score highly for its inimitable political and local news reportage, as well as its sports coverage.

Among the country’s print business offerings, the Financial Gazette remains the dominant player in this market segment by a mile, with a whopping 39 percent of the current national business readership — compared to just 16 percent for its nearest competitor, the Zimbabwe Independent.

Zamps is a continuous local media study that is commissioned by the Zimbabwe Advertising Research Foundation (ZARF). Its main objective is to gather data on the consumption and usage of different media platforms and commercially-produced products.

It provides comprehensive information to stakeholders about the audience for all media — both electronic and print — and thus provides stakeholders with an industry-wide, single trading currency for advertisers, advertising agencies and media owners for the buying and selling of media space.

As flawed as Zamps is in some respects, it is currently the only decent bird’s eye view of Zimbabwe’s media sector — with the rest of what is bandied about as “studies” on and “awards” to the industry patently dodgy and wholly untrustworthy.

Commenting on Zamps’ latest survey yesterday, Francis Mushaninga, the General Manager for Marketing of Associated Newspapers of Zimbabwe (ANZ) — publishers of the Daily News and the Daily News on Sunday — said it was most pleasing to see that the company’s newspapers continued to perform strongly in the current difficult operating environment.

“For this, we would like to thank our loyal readers and advertisers for their continuing support of our titles,” he said.

The re-launched Daily News turned seven years old earlier this year, following its seemingly impossible comeback in March 2011 — after nearly eight years of forced and unjust closure by former president Robert Mugabe’s government in September 2003, for the crime of telling the Zimbabwean story like it is, without fear or favour, and in line with its famous motto.

This effectively makes the newspaper, in its current reincarnation, the country’s youngest national daily newspaper — which also makes its success the more stunning.

The Deputy Editor of the Daily News, Guthrie Munyuki, said yesterday that the “health and further development of Zimbabwe’s fledgling democracy will depend to a large extent on a well-informed population”.

“Indeed, and for our democracy to thrive, Zimbabweans need honest, brave and riveting journalism that speaks truth to power and tells it like it is, without fear or favour — as the renowned style and motto of the Daily News goes.

“It is thus little wonder that no other newspaper in Zimbabwe evokes the same passions and support as the Daily News, because it is a true mirror of society and speaks the language of citizens,” he said.

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