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How DC Thomson surpassed 25,000 paid digital subscriptions
I’m actually going to link to two stories about this milestone from DC Thomson. The first, linked above, is from the INMA and looks at how the shift in the newsroom happened in order to achieve the goal of 25,000 paid subscribers in just 18 months.
The other I actually read first in print in InPublishing and have dug the online link out for. It’s a fantastic interview with EiC Frank O’Donnell where he goes much more into the why of the decision (although please note this was written before last month’s redundancies were announced). I wanted to include it for this quote about having to up the quality of the content before charging for it:
What I see with a lot of publishers is that they put a paywall up, but the content is pretty much the content they had before the paywall, so they’re just saying to people you now need to pay. We’ve tried very hard to increase the quality by giving people more time to write it, by demanding more, by using tools that are available: data, graphics, different story-telling formats.
Tortoise claims 90% podcast listenership growth in a year
Growth is certainly not slow at slow news start-up Tortoise. Listener numbers at the ‘audio-first’ publication have grown 90%, not including numbers from their viral hit Sweet Bobby. They also have some thoughtful explanations about why their listenership skews female – a very unusual trait for a newsroom.
Social media is changing, and paid accounts are the response
Most of the large social media companies have released premium subscription products within the past year. I initially chalked this up to wanting to jump on the reader revenue bandwagon, but this from Alex Kantrowitz offers wider context around the trend. Basically, platforms can’t rely on ‘normal’ people for content generation any more – most now post too infrequently and are too boring. Instead, it’s the ‘professional creators’ who are keeping things ticking over.
The Washington Post looks to bring in new subcribers with its first in-house game, “On the Record”
I don’t know if this counts as a newsgame in quite the way Chris intended to encourage news publishers, but this launch of WaPo’s first in-house game is nonetheless interesting. “On the Record” is a news quiz that tests readers’ knowledge of the week’s top stories. Not one for the news avoiders then…
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