From the paper which was the first to steer away from political ties and which ended the era of the broadsheet only ‘quality’, comes the first new UK-wide national newspaper in decades.
i from the Independent is a brave attempt from a loss making newspaper to try and attract a new readership.
So I rushed out to buy my copy for 20p today (just in case it sold out).
The bad news (for the owners) is that it wasn’t sold out. The good news is that it’s a great idea.
Starting with the front page – i‘s lead is clever. House price crisis. Designed not only to appeal to core Guardian / Independent readers, but also steal from those paying full price for a ‘mid market’ Express / Mail.
The tribute to Andy Holmes and the provocative ‘is kids TV gay’ debate will also appeal to the more ‘mid market’ audience.
So, assuming i doesn’t retreat into the Independent’s enviro-concept front pages and continues to set a similar populist course, the content is there (enough to satisfy the commuter, but not overwhelm) and the price feels right.
And the strategy is potentially interesting. It has three main selling points:
– It’s a lightweight quality paper for those who have deserted newspapers for the Internet
– It’s a replacement Metro in commuter areas – which will do more than reprint the previous evening’s Standard
– Finally, and most interestingly, it’s a real rival to the lucrative mid market audience.
And good luck to it.