'NYT' Revamps Lead Pages

Amid all the obsessive focus on digital, it’s easy to forget that print newspapers still supply the lion’s share of readers and revenue for most big newspaper publishers.

The New York Times isn’t neglecting its legacy product. This week, the publisher introduced a major redesign of the print edition’s A2 and A3 pages, which will now give readers a broader overview of the newspaper’s offerings, both in print and online.

The new lead pages are modeled around the concept of the “front of book” in print magazines. 

In addition to a review of major stories, they will include a number of new features, such as “Inside The Times,” giving readers a behind-the-scenes look at news-gathering; “On This Day In History,” with historic takes from the NYT archives; “Spotlight,” showcasing Times journalists; “The Conversation,” a digest of popular posts from the newspaper’s Web site; a “Quote of the Day”; and “Here to Help,” with a variety of tips and recommendations for areas ranging from consumer technology to cooking and entertainment.

In another big shakeup, the NYT masthead will also appear on page A2, rather than its previous home on the editorial page. The corrections and short summaries of articles previously found on A2 are moving elsewhere. Also, the NYT’s popular Mini Crossword, formerly only available online, will now appear on page A3 of its weekday editions.

Executive editor Dean Baquet explained the goals of the redesign in a statement: “The Times has a universe that extends well beyond the print newspaper, and we’re excited to transform pages A2 and A3 into a must-read destination that gives readers a sense of that. As we continue to invest and innovate in print, this redesign is a step toward creating a print newspaper for a digital era.”

The redesign comes not long after the NYT unveiled its first major brand campaign in decades, including TV ads, with the tagline “The Truth is more important now than ever.”  (The ad also appeared at the Oscars.)

The newspaper added 276,000 digital-only subscriptions in the last three months of 2016. It now has a total digital and print circulation of over 3 million.

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