How publishers are discovering new ways to understand ad revenue

As digital publishers push to grow revenue in a challenging environment, they’re looking for ways to maximize both advertising and subscriptions, instead of trading off between the two major revenue sources. In this video, Michael Silberman, EVP of Media Strategy, and Patrick Appel, VP of Data Strategy at Piano, discuss how having the right measurement of both ads and subscriptions enables deeper understanding, smarter decisions and ultimately, a dynamic approach that delivers against total revenue goals.

Key Takeaways:

  • Evaluating Revenue Opportunities: It's essential to assess the financial impact of offering any type of customer experience. Publishers should carefully price these subscriptions to ensure they do not erode overall revenue. The goal is to enhance user experience without compromising financial health.
  • Dynamic Paywall Utilization: The decision to lock or unlock content for a user should be made based on the potential for ad revenue versus subscription conversion. A dynamic paywall, guided by Ad Revenue Insights and propensity modeling, can determine the best course of action—whether to show more ads to a user or encourage them to subscribe.
  • Understanding User Value: The value of a registered user compared to an anonymous one, or a subscriber, is a key metric. Subscribers often represent a small percentage of the audience but can contribute significantly to revenue, both through direct subscription fees and by generating higher-value ad impressions due to their engagement and frequent visits.
  • Leveraging Analytics for Content Optimization: ARI allows organizations to tailor insights to various internal stakeholders, from executive leadership to editorial teams. Understanding which articles drive traffic and revenue enables publishers to optimize content strategy. Identifying top-performing authors and content types, in terms of traffic, ad revenue, and subscription conversion, helps allocate resources more effectively.
  • Strategic Content Analysis: Analyzing the performance of different content strategies—SEO-focused articles, social media-driven traffic, and pieces that convert subscribers—offers insights into what content resonates with each user segment. This strategic analysis can inform future content creation, ensuring that publishers cater to the diverse interests and behaviors of their audience.