Unlocking Success: Target Niche Audiences Through Special Sections

By Nick Wenger, Director of Media Operations at MANSI Media

Newspaper special sections, also known as supplements or inserts, are dedicated portions of a publication that focus on a specific topic, theme or audience. These sections are separate from the regular news content and often provide in-depth coverage, analysis or features related to a particular subject. Special sections can vary in frequency, appearing weekly, monthly or seasonally.

With audience-targeting capabilities, special sections allow an advertiser to promote its product or service alongside trusted editorial content that is of most interest to the reader.

Newspapers offer special sections on a variety of topics, including lifestyle and entertainment, business and finance, real estate, home and garden, education, sports, health and wellness, and specific seasons and holidays.


The Value of Special Sections

Special sections can be an attractive advertising option for multiple reasons, including their ability to reach a targeted audience, provide higher visibility, and support the timing of your advertising message.

1. Special sections cater to specific topics, interests, or demographics. By advertising in a relevant special section, you can reach a concentrated group of individuals who are interested in your product or service. This increases the chances of connecting with potential customers who are more likely to respond to your advertisement. For example, if you are interested in connecting with adults who are planning for retirement, you may choose to advertise in a financial, health, real estate, entertainment, or travel-related special section.

2. Special sections provide enhanced visibility. Special sections often receive more attention from readers due to their topics or themes. These sections often have less clutter than other parts of the paper, so your advertising message is more prominent. Readers who are specifically interested in a particular section are more likely to engage with the content, including your advertising.

3. Special sections offer timely messaging opportunities. If a retailer is looking to capitalize on Black Friday shoppers, advertising in a special section devoted to holiday gift giving, which is published in mid-November, aligns with the goal of reaching the right target audience at the right time. Newspapers are often kept around for longer periods of time, allowing readers to revisit special sections at their convenience. This extended shelf life increases the exposure of your advertisement and provides an opportunity for repeated impressions and higher response rates.


Best Practices for Utilizing Special Sections

When including special sections as a part of your media mix, consider the following:

1. Plan ahead. To align an advertising campaign with relevant events, special occasions, and annual occurrences, it is vital for an advertiser to plan ahead. For example, if you want to connect with audiences during the Medicare open enrollment period in October, November and December, be sure that you allow enough time to create the ads, deploy them, and make necessary adjustments.

2. Identify target audience. Because special sections target audiences by interests, behaviors and purchasing trends, it is vital to understand which special sections align best with your target audience.

3. Know the deadlines. Although a special section will be inserted into the newspaper on a particular day, the deadline to submit your ad copy may be days or weeks in advance of that. Be sure to understand when you will have to commit to running and ad, and when the final ad copy is due to the publication.

A well-planned advertising campaign causes readers to respond. According to WordsRated, 79% of newspaper readers are influenced to take action within 30 days of reading a newspaper advertisement. The MANSI Media team looks forward to helping you capitalize on the high response rate of newspaper advertising by facilitating your special section advertising placements. Contact us to get started today.