With the vast amount of information available online, some may wonder, “Do people still read print publications like the Penny Saver?” It’s with confidence we can say they do! We say this not only because of the phone calls, emails and kudos we regularly receive from our readers, but also due to the testimonials we receive from advertisers who have built their businesses with our publication.

However, we know asking you to “take our word for it” isn’t enough when it comes to spending your advertising dollars. So, each year we work with a third-party service, the Circulation Verification Council (CVC), to conduct a detailed audit of our readership. This ensures not only that we are delivering our paper to every home we say we do, but we can also continually determine who’s reading our paper, and ultimately how often readers respond to our ads. 

Who is the CVC? The Circulation Verification Council (CVC) is an independent, third-party audit company that reviews thousands of publications nationwide. There are other auditing services available such as the Verified Audit Circulation (VAC), Alliance for Audited Media (AAM) and BPA Media. However, we use the CVC because of its stringent auditing protocol and the transparent nature of its processes.

How is the CVC data compiled? To guarantee accuracy, three audit methods are employed: audit reports, field visits and reader surveys.

  • The audit report entails a request for documentation and a submission by the publishing company. CVC auditors then review these reports, verifying printing, distribution and circulation claims against submitted documentation. 
  • Second, CVC conducts random, unannounced field visits to the publication’s market area. During a visit, CVC may request additional documentation for review, personally visit distribution zones, and conduct other observations that are unavailable remotely.
  • Third, the CVC conducts reader surveys by contacting local residents. This is done by residential and cell phone calls, online surveys, email surveys, direct mail, in-person interviews, and social media. At this time readers are asked whether they receive the publication, whether they read it, and how often they respond to the advertising within.

Is the CVC really unbiased and what is their margin of error? CVC reports an error margin of +/- 4% at the 95% confidence level. To ensure objectivity, CVC is held accountable by a tripartite board of advisors which is made up of equal parts publishers, media decision makers and advertisers. These market experts make certain that there is no power of influence over the CVC’s findings.

How does the Genesee Valley Penny Saver perform? According to the 2018 Genesee Valley Penny Saver Audit Report, our paper has a consistent 98.5% reach rate, meaning 98.5% of the homes in our circulation area receive the Penny Saver on a weekly basis. 80.2% of those recipients regularly read or look through our publication, with 79.3%, of recipients frequently purchasing products or services from ads seen in the Penny Saver. Because of these numbers, we’ve been awarded the Gold Standard, which puts us in the top 1% in the nation. In other words, the ads in our paper generate results!  

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