Can Publishers Still Make a Profit?

Shweiki Media teams up with Linda Ruth—CEO and president of PSCS Consulting and authority on marketing and audience development—to present a webinar on the topics that are of most pressing interest to publishers today.

The Money Problem

Today, the main topic of interest to publishers is the monetization of product. As content and advertising are gravitating away from print and more towards online, the money is moving as well, but at a much slower rate. This is a huge challenge to publishers everywhere.  How does a publisher stay in business when the dollars are not moving at the same rate that the audience, content and advertisers are?

There are many reasons as to why the money is not moving at the same rate as everything else.

  • Free Content: One of the main reasons for this monetization problem is, now, a lot of things are available for free online that had not been previously. People do not need to spend money anymore to buy a news story because they can consume the same story online for free.
  • Audience Engagement: Another reason has to do with the changing patterns of audience engagement. Why will people spend a dollar to send a virtual gift that has no actual value or concrete existence on Facebook but that same person won’t spend a dollar to read a news story or a magazine? It is because audiences are looking for more than just straight content. They want to interact and engage with content that challenges them in a variety of ways.

Convergent Media

In the past, media was separated into its different categories: print, television, radio and “mixed” media. But in reality, “mixed” media was not all that mixed and was actually fairly separated as well.

Today, media is converging in a very dynamic way. There’s video, audio, digital, mobile, print, apps and games. Every publisher has to include these various aspects of convergent media in the brand that they take to the world.

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This has many implications. Nowadays, publishers often say things like “My audience doesn’t just read anymore.  They consume their media and we need to be there when and where they’re going to consume it.”

Consumption is their main focus, but consumption spells passivity. It is much more passive to consume media because consumption tends to be vicarious and associated with old separated forms of media.

Today, media needs to be active, experiential and available everywhere in a branding sense. In other words, it needs to be web-wide. Media does not just live on crusty old websites with specific URL addresses, apps or a Facebook page.  It lives everywhere online. It becomes very important to craft the brand in an interactive and experiential way that is available everywhere.

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