The New Zealand Herald's readership has risen year on year and the Herald on Sunday is now the country's highest-selling Sunday newspaper, according to latest Nielsen and ABC results released today.
NZME titles - including the NZ Herald, Weekend Herald, Herald on Sunday, nzherald.co.nz; lifestyle magazines Canvas and Viva; and several regional mastheads - have delivered strong results in a challenging environment for print products.
A key highlight is that the Herald on Sunday is now the highest-selling Sunday newspaper in New Zealand for the first time in its 12-year history.
The HoS was already the most-read Sunday paper, and its readership has increased year on year again - to 320,000, up 19,000 on the previous year.
The NZ Herald saw a rise in average issue readership of 19,000 to 423,000 readers when compared to the previous year, according to the Nielsen data released today. Its weekly coverage has increased by 28,000 readers versus the previous year, resulting in a weekly readership audience of 768,000.
The Weekend Herald readership has also risen, by 15%. An increase of 60,000 readers from the previous year brings its total readership audience to 472,000.
The Herald daily brand audience across print and online readership is up 13.7% year on year to 894,000. The weekly brand audience has also increased by 8.4%, reaching a total of 1,421,000 people.
nzherald.co.nz audience has increased 18% from last year, with the site now reaching 1.77 million New Zealanders each month.
A number of the Herald's magazines are reflecting the rise in readership. Canvas has increased by 22,000 to 299,000 readers, Viva has increased by 12,000 to 245,000 readers, and Bite has added 8,000 to bring it a total of 212,000 in its year on year readership growth.
NZME managing editor Shayne Currie says the increases are a result of a hardworking team of talented journalists who are consistently producing quality work.
"In a highly competitive and increasingly converged media environment, these results are outstanding for NZME. The Herald has renewed its focus on delivering exclusive news and investigations - with recent examples our multimedia documentary Under the Bridge on Papakura High School and Black Gold, an exclusive investigation into the trade of Chinese girls' hair for the NZ cosmetic market.
"It's more than being just breaking news; it's the relevance of the news to New Zealanders, proving our audience-first philosophy resonates with our readers. I'm incredibly proud of the teams in Auckland and elsewhere in New Zealand."
Herald on Sunday and Weekend Herald editor Miriyana Alexander said: "We are now the country's highest-selling Sunday newspaper, and we're continuing to record readership growth. It is a testament to the quality journalism being produced in the NZME newsrooms, and proves there's still an appetite for great weekend reading."
NZME regional titles also achieved readership growth. The Northern Advocate increased its readership 3.8% to 27,000, the Wanganui Chronicle 23.8% to 26,000, and Hawke's Bay Today 6.7% to 48,000.
NZME chief commercial officer Laura Maxwell says the increased readership across our metro and regional titles shows that our content is resonating with audiences and this is delivering a fantastic platform for advertisers.
"The Herald audience is showing strong growth, with great growth in news video shows NZ Herald Focus and Local Focus and data-driven journalism within NZ Herald Insights.
The credibility of our brands and the agility with which we can connect advertisers to these audiences across multiple channels offers advertisers a multi-faceted approach to engage with audiences, and that creates the NZME difference for our customers."