In just five years, Brazilian tabloids have increased their combined circulation from 400,000 to 1.5 million. One such newspaper, Super Noticia, outsold the top national broadsheet Folha de Sao Paulo in May, the fourth such occurrence in two years. Extra, another tabloid, has seen sales grow almost 18 percent in the past year alone, to nearly 285,000 copies daily.
What is their secret? According to Lúcia Castro, editor in chief of Super Noticia, the tabloids appeal to blue-collar workers who would never before have picked up a newspaper. At 25 centavos, they are also papers anyone can afford.
Of course, the appearance of scantily clad girls on the cover - in a similar vein to the Sun's Page Three girls - can't hurt. Nor do the various promotions the tabloids offer, like discounts on a book by a popular Brazilian author.
Still, the numbers are impressive considering the hardships faced by the country's broadsheets. Folha de Sao Paulo lost 5 percent of its sales last year, while sales at second-largest Estado de Sao Paulo dropped almost 18 percent. In contrast, sales at Super Noticia fell less than 1 percent. The top tabloid remains optimistic for the future, as it is soon to purchase a $14 million printing press that will increase its print run to 600,000.