I love reading the newspaper in the morning with a cup of caffeine, I mean, soda. It’s usually my small, local paper. I like getting a bit of newsprint on my fingertips and not having to scroll with my arrow key. For me, it’s a “real” experience. But with the newspaper publishing industry in, dare I say, crisis, what does this mean for you as you evaluate and re-evaluate your marketing mix for 2009 and beyond? In the newspaper world, advertisers are bailing. Ad revenues fell 16.4% in 2008 to $37.9 billion and experts suggest that by 2012, spending with hit a low $28.4 billion. If people aren’t reading the paper, then where are they getting their information? Chances are, it’s a combination of many media that now include text messages to their cell phones, subscriptions to e-newsletters, webinars, and yes, the online version of the traditional newsprint. I still struggle with reading a newspaper online. It just doesn’t feel right. But when you consider where many are investing their advertising portion of their marketing budget, you might want to re-assess your own budget and look for similar opportunities. How are you going to reach those customers that are veering from newspapers? What medium are you going to use to announce your new products and services – that will actually reach your targeted audience? Where are your customers getting their information? This last question is an interesting one. As the marketing mix continues to evolve, perhaps now is the time to do a bit of your own research. How do your customers want to receive information? What do you customers read that inspires them? Those places are where you need to be with your message. If you don’t know what they are, find out. Otherwise, you may just have a slow leak in your advertising budget.