1. What opportunities in the marketing environment did Gannett seize in launching USA Today? How did the company learn about and respond to these opportunities? Research and update the case information as much as possible with current research, and then conduct a comprehensive SWOT analysis for USA Today. Gannett noticed two trends or opportunities in the reading public and took advantage of those trends. The first one is the increasingly short attention span among a generation nurtured on television; the second is the growing hunger for more information. The newspaper’s primary mission was to provide more news to their readers in less time. They targeted the young and well-educated because he noticed that they were busy and care about the news (they targeted nontraditional newspaper readers) unlike their competitors. Typical readers turned out to be professionals, usually managers, about 40 years old, well educated, with an income of about$60,000 a year. USA Today capitalized its market opportunities by listening to their readers. They provided personal level communication, provided news in a clear, upbeat, positive way. They were also the first color newspaper and captured readers using a TV set like distribution box. They were very unique and out of the box. In addition to this, Gannett’s research had shown that readers get most of their information from such snippets and they were also interested in sports, movie reviews, and health information so he didn’t just limit it to traditional news, he added diverse news about several topics like sports. I believe that the company knew about opportunities by closely communicating with their customers and conducting research and responding to their consumer’s needs by continuously re innovating and adding values to fit the reader’s lifestyle and interests. For instance, when they knew that a lot of their readers are not only interested in traditional news, but they are also sports junkie they added more subjects like sports, lifestyle, and events. They also changed the width, made the paper slimmer and easier to handle to fit in airplanes and tight spaces. When US Today at their beginning found the traveling business people a potential target segment they targeted them by selling to airlines. Then they also started selling to hotels, and they also started bulk selling (incorporated the blue chip circulation strategy), on the road in the US, on the road internationally as well.
2. What are the SWOT implications for USA Today as it looks toward its future? What strengths and opportunities can USA leverage as it looks for a competitive advantage in the distribution of news and information? Strengths
1. USA Today is the second largest- selling daily newspaper in the United States. It circulation had rapidly grew from 350,000 in 1982 to approximately 2.3 million today. 2. USA Today achieved rapid success due it innovative format: written in shorter pieces, using colorful photos chart and graphs, practical columns and at-a-glance boxes. The paper communicates with readers clearly and directly and it also faster to read and easy to handle thanks to its slimmer pages. Thanks to it late deadlines, the paper delivery more timely news that other papers. 3. The newspaper has a 1-800 and 1-900 “hot-line” numbers that readers can call for expert information on financial planning, college admissions, minority business development, taxes another subjects. 4. USA Today offers an online version, USAToday.com that is one of the Internet’s top sites for news and information. It allows readers to receive up-to the moment’s news with colorful visuals a crisp audio, weather forecasts, travel information and access to the paper archive from the ‘80s to today information. 5. The paper offers USA Today International, which is available in more than ninety countries in Western Europe, the Middle East, North Africa, and Asia. 6. USA Today is widely distributed via newsstand retailers, large grocery...
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