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Industry Insights: Will distributed content kill the ad-driven revenue model?

Mar 24, 2016
Industry Insights

Industry Trend of the Week

Distributed content is still hot. Apple News, Facebook’s Instant Articles and Google’s AMP are driving traffic, revenue and subscriptions. Libération’s CTO talks about how his company is benefiting from distribution on Facebook; NowThis killed their homepage and is using different platforms to target different audience segments; and the Washington Post’s MD for digital explains why the paper distributes everything to Instant Articles. Could distributed content be the final stake in the heart of the ad-driven revenue model?

Story of the Week

Are We at a Tipping Point Against the Dominance of Ad-Supported Journalism?
A year ago, the media industry thought it had finally made it out of the woods with digital advertising revenue steadily increasing. Fast forward a year and it turns out the celebration was premature – digital ads do not generate enough revenue so publishers are again looking to their users for subscription revenue. Fortunately audience segmentation tools that let publishers offer tailored user experiences, like Piano’s VX, are going a long way towards driving increased subscription revenue.

Libération on Facebook’s Instant Articles
Xavier Grangier, Libération CTO and head of digital, speaks to why the French newspaper decided to test Facebook’s Instant Articles early on, how Facebook’s integration team helped get them going and a detailed look at the results thus far.

NowThis grew audience 1500% after killing homepage
Nowthis, a media company that produces news videos, stopped posting content on its home page, instead relying on various platforms to reach different audiences. They have narrowed their focus to only a few platforms that fit their model and then deliver products tailored to each channel to drive views and engagement.

We should embrace free content distribution says Washington Post’s Digital Chief
Since Jeff Bezos acquired The Washington Post, the newspaper has fervently embraced digital including distributed content. Emilio Garcia-Ruiz, The Post’s managing editor for digital explains why the Post adopted their strategy (beyond having an Internet pioneer as their owner).

What’s The Real Cost Of Page Size?
Mather Economics’ Matt Lindsay looks to the problem of overlarge web pages and their ability to negatively impact user experience. He explains a study he’s framing to measure how slow load speeds can impact publishers in terms of revenue and operating margins.

How to Use Analytics to Understand and Improve Audience Engagement
Alexandra Kanik, Mediashift’s Metrics Editor takes a look at some tools that publishers can use right now in order to determine how their audiences are engaging with content and methods to keep those audiences engaged and loyal.

OTT Emerges As Fastest-Growing Source Of Ad Views, Accelerates Redefinition Of ‘TV’
OTT is the most dynamic segment of a rapidly expanding universe that now includes linear, non-linear and OTT viewing according to the latest edition of Magna Global’s Media Economy Report. The study makes the case that television has reached a tipping point that might require a redefinition of what has long been Madison Avenue’s apex medium.

Vertical thinking: why publishers are investing in vertical video
With more users viewing content on smart phones and tablets, acceptance of vertical video is becoming commonplace. Although professional photographers hate vertical video, ads in a vertical format have nine times more completed views than horizontal ads and the same is true of vertical content.

Jarvis: ‘Video Is A Social Token’
CUNY journalism professor and author Jeff Jarvis says broadcasters need to rethink how video is playing out in people’s lives, especially younger viewers who see it as an element of conversation.

DeepMind Could Bring The Best News Recommendation Engine
DeepMind, Google’s artificial intelligence defeated the world’s best Go player; now Filloux is imagining how AI could overhaul content recommendation engines to improve user engagement and loyalty.

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Why Subscriptions are the Future of Journalism
BILD’s Stefan Betzold on the challenges, and opportunities, of distributed content