Publishing Weekly Roundup

The must-read publishing stories you may have missed this week

Condé Nast goes all-in on paywalls, successful business models for magazine media, and more…

Condé Nast goes all-in on paywalls

A tweet by Wired’s NY Editor, Nicholas Thompson, caught everyone off guard this week as he shared the news that, ‘All of the publications here at Condé Nast will have paywalls by the end of the year’. What’s surprising is not that Condé is searching for new revenue streams, given how it needs to stem heavy losses, but rather that it has chosen to put every publication behind a paywall.

It underscores how vital it is for publishers of all sizes to generate a mix of revenue streams – Condé’s 5 year goal is to drop reliance on advertising from 70% to 50% and its ‘pivot to paywalls’ is clearly part of this strategy.

Intriguingly, buried within Condé’s announcement is the news that it is considering charging advertisers a premium for access to paid subscribers because they are ‘worth more’.

@WNIP

Successful business models for magazine media

As well as having the necessary business acumen, publishers and editors must be passionate about their titles. Mary Hogarth explores key strategies for a sustainable magazine. 

What’s new this week

Beset on all sides, news publishers are hang-gliding over the hell of a public trust crisis
In the middle of a monetisation crisis, publishers are rediscovering that trust is a catalyst for payment — but the enemies of the free press are marshalling against them.
All Condé titles to go behind paywalls, “the ultimate measure of audience engagement”
Avid readers of any of Condé Nast’s publications now need to prepare to pay up; the iconic publisher will place all its US-based titles behind paywalls by the end of this year.
EU blinks as Google portrays “a doomsday scenario” for news publishers
Last week Google showed some “test” screenshots (first shared with Search Engine Land) showing what would happen if the proposed EU Copyright Directive came into effect.
Impact of voice-enabled technologies on content discovery for publishers
Consumers are increasingly using voice-driven services on their smartphones and smart speakers. This is changing the way content is sought out and consumed.
Are blogs making a comeback in 2019? Probably not
The old-school blogosphere isn’t coming back, but I would argue that the trade-off isn’t so bad.
Google proposes changes that will break ad-blockers in Chrome
Google engineers have proposed changes to the open-source Chromium browser that will break content-blocking extensions, including various ad blockers.
35 million and counting: How an Indian publisher is building a massive loyal audience
Indian digital publisher Times Internet Limited is building engagement by rewarding its users with redeemable points for engaging with its bouquet of websites.
How publishers can win the voice war between Amazon and Google
People have complained that the news reports on voice assistants are too long, or don’t answer questions accurately. But the devices aren’t going away.
Financial Times’ subscriber strategies to “catch ’em young”
As publishers fine-tune their digital strategies to create sustainable revenue models, some have been turning their focus to younger demographics to future proof their solutions. 
What’s in store for mobile in 2019?
2018 was an interesting time in the mobile world, with data abuse and increased regulation casting a shadow over some of the top tech launches. But what can we expect going forward?
Product development to consultancy: The publishers’ burgeoning playbook
A growing number of publishers looking to diversify their revenue portfolio are combining their editorial judgment and creative services to create consumer products for their audiences. 
Eight media brands with innovative podcasts
Publishers are using podcasts to increase brand awareness, change, pivot away from existing media models and even bridge the gap between audiences and senior executives.
AI is the new printing press. Here’s what that means for online publishers
If you’re not leveraging AI to give users a better experience already, you’re leaving money on the table and users in the dark.

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