Newspapers distributed in local businesses rather than in the Publisac

places with a few copies”,”text”:”We have sixty official displays with large quantities and more than 200places with a few copies””>We have sixty official displays with large quantities and more than 200 locations with some copiesexplains the publisher Chantal Roussel, general manager of the In Media group.

Arriving at the Val-David pharmacy, she is delighted to see that the display is clearly visible at the entrance to the store.

Flipping through the latest edition of her weekly, she explains that the distributor comes by twice a week to make sure there are copies available.

The manager, Mélanie Monette, did not hesitate for a moment to become an official distribution point.

His business is trying to reduce its ecological footprint with, among other things, the purchase of an electric car for deliveries. For us, it was important to encourage someone to go greenshe says. In addition, it brings traffic to our pharmacy.

Sylvain Lacasse, Nancy Beaulne and Chantal Roussel.

Photo : Radio-Canada / Vincent Rességuier

Reduced paper consumption

This pilot project was based on surveys conducted among the population.

First observation: only 40% of readers turn to the paper version, compared to 60% for the digital version.

Second finding: at least 20% of Publisac recipients do not read the local newspaper.

« With all the debate on the Publisac, we said to ourselves: we have to be ahead of the parade. »

A quote from Sylvain Lacasse, president of the In Media group

The president of the publisher In Médias, Sylvain Lacasse, concluded that it is possible to reduce the number of copies printed, without losing readers.

If everything goes as planned, he even plans to apply this distribution method to the seven other newspapers he owns in the Laurentians.

Its calculation is simple. It prints 100,000 copies for its eight markets every week. It could therefore cut the printing of 20,000 copies weekly, or more than a million over 52 weeks. It is there too, the added value at the environmental levelhe said enthusiastically.

A fine financial operation as well, because in the regional media, we no longer have the means to print for nothinghe concludes.

Portrait of Sylvain Lacasse, president of the In Médias group.

Sylvain Lacasse with a copy of the newspaper L’info du Nord.

Photo : Radio-Canada / Vincent Rességuier

The Publisac in decline

This decision is motivated, finally, by the weakening of the Publisac model. In Media feared that TC Transcontinental would end distribution without warning.

Sylvain Lacasse is not the only editor to make this calculation. Many regional newspapers should follow in the next year. This is the feeling of Frédéric Couture, president of Médialo, who foresees a strong trend.

His group has a dozen publications in Lanaudière, Abitibi-Témiscamingue and Bas-Saint-Laurent.

He abandoned the use of Publisac in his Bas-Saint-Laurent market a few days ago and he strongly consider to do the same for all of its newspapers, which have a circulation of more than 300,000 copies per week.

He too mentions the environmental factor, but he also thinks that the tide is turning from a political point of view: it goes against the laws that are passed at the momenthe analyzes.

He takes as an example the city of Mirabel which scared away the Publisac and the measures taken in Montreal where, starting next May, interested citizens will have to register in a register to receive the famous bag of flyers at home.

Times are changing continues Sylvain Lacasse, nobody wants to use plastic, it’s a planetary movement.

Portrait of Frédéric Broué, the mayor of Sainte-Agathe-des-Monts.

Frédéric Broué, the mayor of Sainte-Agathe-des-Monts, leafs through an edition of L’Info du Nord.

Photo : Radio-Canada / Vincent Rességuier

A locally supported initiative

Both Sylvain Lacasse and Frédéric Couture have the support of local elected officials.

The municipal council of Sainte-Agathe-des-Monts supports unanimously this transition, says Mayor Frédéric Broué.

He considers that the project of the In Médias group is going in the same direction as the orientations of his city, namely an approach environmentally friendly.

Group Newspapers In Media

The newspaper L’info du Nord has several local editions in the Laurentians

Photo : Radio-Canada / Vincent Rességuier

He also sees it as a recipe for ensuring the sustainability of regional media which, he says, are a privileged channel for public institutions and an essential transmission belt for communities.

The general manager of the Greater Sainte-Agathe Chamber of Commerce notes that its members are turning away from the Publisac. According to Nancy Beaulne, most merchants now use online flyers.

Distributor TC Transcontinental declined to comment. On its website, it indicates that the Publisac reaches more than five million readers per week.

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