Let’s try some thought experiments, in the best tradition of Albert Einstein.
The hypothesis we’ll explore is this: That the large, lucrative revenue stream that newspaper companies have enjoyed from major/national advertisers will decline to something approaching zero.
Our thought experiments will examine what we should do about that. Read the rest of this entry
How do you define the mission and purpose of local reporting?
Cover the news? Hold institutions accountable? Maintain a well-informed citizenry? Hold up a mirror to the community? “Comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable?”
Search around the Web for statements of journalism’s purpose and you’ll find all of the above, and more like them.
And there’s a lot of anxiety these days about the present and future of this mission. With local advertising and circulation revenues spiraling steadily downward, and with newsrooms shrinking along a parallel line, two things are evident. Whatever the mission of local reporting is:
- A lot less of it is happening now.
- Even less will be happening in the future.
In many places in this business, the central question these days is: How can we drive revenue from new sources, so we can keep supporting the functions of journalism that are critical to a free society?
To an extent, I buy that. But there’s also something seriously misguided about it. Read the rest of this entry
I’ve been getting a series of demos from Big Data providers as we at Morris Publishing Group work to figure out how we will offer Big Data services to local advertisers.
Just lately, we’ve been getting down into the details. For me, this brought a profound leap in comprehension.
It was like staring into a crystal ball and seeing a monumental event that’s about to change your life. Read the rest of this entry
What could disrupted legacy media companies possibly have in common with Procter & Gamble — the huge and perennially successful consumer goods manufacturer?
One thing we have in common is that we both need to recognize and plan for the continuous loss of revenue from declining products.
We don’t think of P&G as needing to cope with fading products as an endemic part of its business. But 10 years ago, when I was leading the Newspaper Next project for the American Press Institute, I learned that part of their success lies in the careful planning they do to offset those declines.
We in the media business can take an important lesson from P&G’s approach. Read the rest of this entry
How can we sell more digital? In traditional media, that question has been pounding us for years.
It’s in our heads, in our meetings, in our training, in our budgeting. Few of us are growing our digital revenues at rates anywhere near the growth rate of digital spending.
And one of the toughest challenges has been getting our core sales reps to present digital advertising and marketing solutions effectively to their existing customers.
When your organization needs large-scale change (and what disrupted media organization doesn’t?), how do you get it done?
Terabytes have been written about the strategies and tactics that legacy media organizations need. I’ve written my share, too, here at MediaReset.com. But I’ve seen precious little written about how to lead and manage effective change to carry out these strategies.
For several years, local media companies have been in a nasty predicament.
We’ve worked hard for years to build sizable, high-quality local audiences on our websites. And we’ve worked hard to sell banner advertising on those sites.
But we haven’t been able to sell what savvy digital advertisers now want and expect: highly targeted impressions on our sites reaching only the individuals with the highest propensity to buy their products or services. Read the rest of this entry
What if your local media company had a product that could make local businesses say, “Wow! Can you really do that???”
That’s the Holy Grail of media sales — a solution that meets an urgent need for customers in a way they have never before thought possible.
I saw that kind of solution a couple of weeks ago. I promise you — it will be big. Read the rest of this entry
Twenty years ago, my family had a problem.
We were the sole and devoted owners of a successful stand-alone daily newspaper in Monroe, MI. But our principle shareholders — my father and his brother and sister — were advancing in years and had no solution in place to transfer ownership into my generation. It seemed we had two options. Read the rest of this entry
When your comfortable, well-established business model is being disrupted, one of the toughest challenges is looking beyond your old business model to visualize what you must become.
In past posts on this blog, one by one, I’ve pointed out a host of new opportunities that are emerging in local media markets. In this post, I’m going to roll them up into a single new business entity we can visualize and work to develop. Read the rest of this entry