Social media has penetrated nearly every aspect of our public and private lives, from the White House providing access to to a coffee shop that . Because the digital space allows for social media commentary and easy social sharing of content, making the content more engaging and participatory, media is being created and consumed more than ever before. That is why it is an exciting time for content owners and distributors. With this drastic change in the eco-system, traditional media companies might not be able to stick to their old forms of media. They will have to embrace the new eco system, which I think has got many opportunities for them.
In a survey carried out over May and June 2010 by PR network Oriella, many respondents said that publishers were considering new online sources of revenue, such as paywalls, membership plans, and premium mobile content for phones and tablets. This may be due to the fact that, over the past two years, publications have been reporting significant loss of readership/viewership as well as ad revenues to online media. The figure below shows the percentage of respondents willing to explore the digital media.
If you look at the front page of nytimes.com, you will notice it has recommendations from users’ Facebook network alongside stories chosen by their editors. Visitors can navigate to the “Most Popular” tab to find stories that are the most popular among bloggers and readers. This is another example of a traditional publishing organization embracing the potential of digital.
Though many news organizations would like to engage readers across many social platforms, they’re eventually looking for ways to monetize it. Mostly, the justification behind social activities is an increase in traffic. But there are some examples such as ‘s “R ,” which sells businesses widget space to display their Twitter feed where the business directly controls what is displayed on the site and also the advertising has the potential to be more effective because users can engage it. Another opportunity that has good potential is “in-stream advertising” from companies like , which is mostly known for celebrity-endorsed tweets, but also includes an API that enables publishers to monetize their mobile apps through targeted in-stream ads.
Because digital has offered advertisers with a wider range of options and alternatives, experimenting with platforms to social advertising provides a huge opportunity for publishers which I believe have a really unique opportunity in the digital space.
What other digital opportunities are there for traditional publishers? Share your thoughts in the comments below.