The monetization of the media has been a controversial issue since the internet took traditional media to its deathbed, especially after social media gained popularity. that the media is slowly leaving this deathbed and finding new ways to get back to their old days.
Two crucial facts underlie the fact that many important media brands no longer exist.
The first one is traditional media brands’ inability to meet the changing readership needs. The fact that these organizations have seen digital media as a threat for a long time and therefore refuse to produce digital content is the most important reason why they lost a war that did not exist.
The second reason is that content consumers perceive it as a “free” service. Especially the amount of free content that can be accessed after social media has played an important role in the formation of this perception.
But slowly, things are changing. There is an audience willing to pay for quality and convenient content and a media eager to use digital media more.
The concept of “subscription economy” started to become important, especially after streaming services became able to deliver quality content to users conveniently. Offering thousands of shows and movies for just a few dollars a month, Netflix, and Spotify, which has almost all the music in the world, as well as the others alike have paved the way for the adoption of the subscription concept. The subscription economy is expected to reach $1.5 trillion by 2025.
Recently, the heavyweights of the print media are also trying to get a share of the subscription economy. It is possible to access all the content of The Wall Street Journal by paying only 4 dollars a month.
Many publishers see their subscription systems as an essential part of their financial future. The fact that content consumers are ready to pay -a reasonable amount- for quality content created under editorial control shows that this expectation will be met to a large extent.
Advertising and Sponsorships
Advertising and sponsorships have been among the important financiers of the media since day one. This situation does not seem to change much. However, there is a remarkable transformation.
Especially after the restriction of the use of third-party cookies, data generation will become a tricky business. In this new environment where many advertisers will focus on contextual advertising, it is imperative that the media is ready for this change.
E-Commerce and Affiliate Marketing
Today, media is not only an area where content is consumed but also an area for shopping. People get news of products and services from the media. Therefore, media organizations that cleverly combine content and sales can make good money off of it.Founded by Gwyneth Paltrow, Goop is one of the best examples of this.
Thanks to affiliate marketing, media brands can sell their own product inventories or mediate the sales of other e-commerce platforms. Media organizations that can keep up with technology and offer robust and diverse data can significantly increase their revenues with affiliate marketing.
What Do Media Brands Need to Do to Fill Their Crates?
Let’s summarize all that we talked about.
A subscription model that makes sense for the audience can be developed: The audience will pay for quality content. However, this money must be at an acceptable level, and the designed system must ensure easy access to the content. Subscriptions can be diversified to make things easier. For example, the readers can be allowed to subscribe only to the content titles they are interested in, or packages, such as family subscriptions, can be developed.
Advertising revenues can be increased with first-party quality data generation: A loyal audience and content is the most important asset in the media’s ability to produce data without being dependent on others. However, in order for this asset to function, it is necessary to develop solutions with the proper perspective. With software-supported data processing solutions, it is possible for the media to create a more productive space for advertisers.
Relevant e-commerce can make a big difference: It’s time for the media to hire e-commerce professionals. A media brand with high credibility can turn into an e-commerce platform in a short time. Selling with original content may be one of the most important tools to rekindle the power of the media.