Sunday red tops dented by Sunday Sun

Some of the ground made by the Sunday red tops after the closure of the News of the World has been clawed back by News International after the launch of the Sunday Sun, according to ABC circulation figures.

All of the Sunday red tops reported drops in circulation in February, the month the first Sunday edition of the Sun was published.

The sector launched a raft of above the line TV campaigns, promotions, giveaways and cut their cover prices in a bid to mitigate News International’s launch, but early indications appear to suggest these initiative did not manage to retain as many readers as the publishers would have hoped.

The biggest tabloid in the Sunday sector following the News of the World’s closure, The Sunday Mirror was down 9.06% month on month to 1,594,293 in February, but the title is still up 59.11% year-on-year.

Trinity Mirror sister title The People was down 9.06% month on month to 701,246 and is up 55.66% year-on-year.

Northern & Shell’s Daily Star Sunday, which was one of the biggest beneficiaries of the News of the World’s closure, was down 7.09% month-on-month. The title is up 96.04% year-on-year.

Elsewhere, although not direct competitors, The Mail on Sunday was down 2.01% month on month to 1,882,469 and the Sunday Express was down 6.60% to 567,800.

The first edition of The Sun on Sunday recorded an audited circulation figure of 3,213,613, although that figure is likely to sag in future months as souvenir hunters and curious buyers may not buy subsequent editions, according to an Ipsos Mori report.

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