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News brews up mX comeback

Wednesday, 10 October 2018
By Jake Nelson

Back for a limited time: mX returns after three years.

Three years after the demise of free commuter newspaper mX, News Corp has resurrected it for a limited four-week cameo run in Melbourne in conjunction with Carlton and United Breweries.

Dubbed mX Zero, the paper was relaunched as part of a deal with CUB to promote its new alcohol-free beer, Carlton Zero, and will be available every Wednesday until October 17 from Southern Cross, Flinders Street, Melbourne Central, Parliament, Flagstaff, and Richmond stations.

According to Ondrej Foltin, head of content for Victoria at News Corp Australia, the deal with CUB was a good match. “Throughout mX’s 14-year history, readers came to expect the unexpected. mX certainly rewrote the newspaper rules with its irreverent news delivery, and now it’s comeback. CUB is rewriting the beer rules with the first non-alcoholic beer in its 180-year history. The partnership is a natural fit,” he said. “We’ve created a pop-up newspaper, in the modern vernacular.”

The rebooted mX is being printed at News Corp’s plant in Westgate Park, sharing space with the Herald-Sun. “We started at print runs of about 70,000 per edition, and adjusted that as we’ve received feedback,” said Foltin.

The newspaper includes sections from its original run, including mX Talk, Goss and Glam, and For What It’s Worth. “Everyone loves a comeback. Sporting revivals are hugely popular, and fairly frequent. Think Tiger Woods. But newspaper comebacks are much less likely, and that’s exactly why we expect this improbable comeback will be so popular,” said Foltin. “mX was a much-loved newspaper with its own unique style that commuters really enjoyed reading on their way home. It’s a comeback story that we’re excited to be a part of.”

The response from consumers has been positive, says Foltin, with plenty of people calling for mX to make a permanent return. Though it’s early days, Foltin believes the possibility isn’t off the table, provided advertisers, who deserted the paper for mobile in its original run, sign on again. “It’s had some traction with advertisers appearing back on the market, and we’ve also fielded a couple of early enquiries from some sizable advertisers asking about the possibility of doing something similar, having an integrated campaign with mX. We expect there to be some ads outside of CUB in the fourth edition.

“There’s been a lot of love out there for mX and its comeback. It’s been a load of fun for my team, and we think that’s been reflected with the readers. In a serious world, it’s good to have fun,” he said.

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