If you read the Deseret News only for the news and entertainment it offers, you're missing a lot.

You're missing good bargains, good prices - and the opportunity to save a lot of money.But if you're a typical newspaper subscriber, you're probably way ahead of me. Most folks who take a newspaper do so, in part, because of the advertising.

Advertising is sometimes viewed as a necessary evil around the newsroom. As though it somehow besmirches the high and holy calling of journalism. We should not be so pompous. After all, advertising pays our salaries and makes it possible to deliver the news.

Bob Cutler, advertising director for Newspaper Agency Corp. (which handles advertising for the Deseret News), has more humbling news for proud reporters.

Research shows that a main reason people take a paper is the advertising, he says. In fact, grocery ads often have better readership than many news stories. Most people dislike television advertising. But they actually like newspaper advertising.

That's because TV ads interrupt and force themselves upon viewers, while newspaper readers can scan pages and stop only on ads that interest them.

Because they offer such a friendly, non-intrusive form of advertising, newspapers remain the No. 1 advertising medium in the country, with more advertising revenue than TV, radio, direct mail or anything else.

Newspapers offer advertisers and readers lots of advantages. If you need new tires for your car, for example, you don't go turn on your TV to find the best bargain. You might waste all day sitting there. Instead, you grab your newspaper and turn to the tire ads in the sports section. Or you look through the Sunday department store inserts.

You compare sale prices and decide where you want to shop.

Ditto for many other products and services. Who goes out to buy a car without looking through the classifieds to compare prices and features? It's the best way to get a good deal.

Advertising is one of the best services a newspaper offers. Use it wisely and you'll save a lot of money - far more than the cost of a subscription. You can save extra amounts by using the "people's marketplace" - classified advertising. And don't forget coupons. I'll have more on them in future columns.