Predictions for journalism 2023: Subscription pressures force product innovation
After many years of following Nieman Lab’s annual predictions, I was honoured (and slightly panicked) this year to be asked to contribute one. Mine is based on a couple of conversations I’ve had with subscription experts and people working on publisher products, and is something I’ve seen publishers like the FT and Tortoise try already.
In short, full subscriptions are only ever going to convert a small portion of readers. Once growth slows and the lowest-hanging fruit — the superfans — have signed up, publishers will have to get smarter about how to make money from the rest. I argue that publishers will get smarter about carving off portions of paid content to entice readers.
Interestingly, this caused some debate on the Media Voices team. Peter firmly believes the opposite will happen next year: that economic pressures will force publishers to increase the value of subscription bundles, not risk experimenting with segmentation. I’d love to hear your thoughts.
Surprising beneficiaries of ad slowdown: small publishers, traditional media
If there is a positive story in the ad-spending downgrades being issued this week, it’s that ad budgets are becoming far less concentrated among the big digital platforms and the biggest beneficiaries are smaller digital publishers and – surprise – traditional media.
There’s hope again for local news as innovative start-ups find their feet
After decades of decline, local news had been written off as a casualty of the digital age. But wide availability of digital publishing tools and technology has made it easier for newer organisations to grow. Here’s a round up of the year in local news as part of our Media Moments 2022 report.
From $100m in-flight mags giant to zero and up again: How Ink bounced back
In-flight magazine publishing wasn’t a great market to be in when the pandemic hit in 2020. Now however, Ink – the largest in-flight magazine publisher in the world – is back to full strength. Chief Executive Simon Leslie “designed in my head a business that would come out of the other side, and that’s what I went about building.”
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