Wick Communications

Newspapers diversify to survive

In journalism on April 11, 2013 at 3:17 pm

Newspaper Association of America

Most of us have been in the business long enough to remember when advertising was, for all intents and purposes, the only revenue that mattered. Not so long ago, it accounted for 80 percent or more of the money coming in to newspapers.

Those days are rapidly changing.

According to a new study commissioned by the Newspaper Association of America, 40 percent of newspaper revenues now come from non-advertising sources. Much of that comes from circulation, particularly as paywalls become more prevalent. But the newspaper isn’t a two-legged animal. Newspapers are also making money on enterprises like Wick Communications’ own Local Digital Advantage and even from hosting events that have nothing (or little) to do with their core mission.

It is heartening to read columns like this one in USA Today. Columnist Rem Reider, quoting the likes of newspaper analyst Ken Doctor, sees hope. For one thing, he notes that newspaper companies no longer see technology as a threat, but rather an opportunity. If we were late to fully appreciate the promise of online media – more readers, more information, more ways to disseminate our product – then perhaps mobile technology gives us a second chance.

— Clay

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