Chinese and Tamil newspapers are available across Malaysia as they make up 2 of the 3 major communities. While Bahasa Malaysia and English newspapersRead More
The print media in Malaysia is very much similar to other countries in the region. However, there are some significant differences in the landscape in that Malaysia has a very multi-cultural and 4 major languages.
Volatile media market
To say the least, Malaysia’s tri-lingual background makes the print media a lot more challenging than other countries. As such, this platform has faced many hurdles and issues over the past 20 years in which it has to compete not only within itself but with other media as well. The introduction of social media has not helped this industry much either. However, the print media industry has weathered all the obstacles and today, print media is still very much demanded.
Types of print media
The print media industry encompasses various titles. While most people will envision the print media industry of newspapers, it covers the magazines as well. Each title will target a certain segment which has its own profile and demographics.
Newspapers in print media
Newspapers in Malaysia are categorized based on their languages. There are in general 4 major languages in Malaysia which mean there are 4 major types of readers. Within these categories, they have their own sub-segments as well. They include:
- Bahasa Malaysia – Berita Harian, Berita Mingguan, Kosmo!, Utusan Malaysia, Utusan Mingguan
- English Language – The Star, New Straits Times, The Sun
- Chinese Language – Sin Chew Jit Poh, Nan Yang Siang Pau, China Press
- Tamil – Makkal Osai, Malaysian Nanban, Tamil Nesan
The newspapers listed above does not cover all that is available in Malaysia. Besides language-based papers, there are some titles that are targeted to a specific market. This includes New Sabah Times which is published for the Kadazan-Dusun people in Sabah and Utusan Borneo in East Malaysia. Meanwhile, there are other titles that are more specialized and targeted namely:
- The Edge – A business newspaper with insights and various sub-sections for lifestyle and others
- Focus Malaysia – Weekly publication on business in Malaysia and the region
Unlike newspapers, magazines are very different. This is because magazines target a small group of readers depending on their interest areas. There are about 400 over magazine titles operating in Malaysia. They all fall under categories and titles such as:
- Women – Female, Nu You, Cosmopolitan
- Men – FHM, Men’s Fitness, Esquire Malaysia
- Automotive – Motor Trader, TopGear Malaysia, Hypertune
- Travel and tourism – Travelmate, Travel 3Sixty (Air Asia in-flight magazine)
- ICT – Mobile World, HWM, PC.COM
- Entertainment – HMI, AstroView
- Health and fitness – Healthy Life, Glam
- Parenting – Parenthood, Mommy Baby
- Business – SME Magazine, Business Today, Marketing
- Education – DoctorJob’s Courses Now!, Smart Kids
- General Titles – Time Out, KL Lifestyle, Vision KL
It must be noted that most, if not all the magazine titles in Malaysia are published as single-language. This means that the target market is a lot smaller as they will cater to those who are interested in the area and then to the language community of that particular group.
The advertising landscape for magazines has changed as much as how it is with newspapers. Readers today are more selective with what they read especially with more resources available online and more so with the advent of video advertising. As such, the potential has reduced in this landscape although brand owners are still using magazines to reach their target segment is based on the area of interest, using compelling content and attractive covers.