IIvisited today with the chief marketing officer of one of the United Kingdom’s leading newspapers who shared some insights on the changing industry landscape, paid content, and marketing a multi-media brand:

  • U.K. newspaper industry: The United Kingdom’s newspaper industry is being deconstructed and will grow back in different ways. Hyper-local news will be the cornerstone of what remains of the regional press.

  • Paid content: “I can’t imagine a world with a straightforward pay model,” he said. Most newspapers could monetise the business-to-business aspects of their content, but he can’t yet see how to monetise the much broader business-to-consumer aspects of general-interest newsmedia companies. “It’s possible, but it’s going to take a very long time,” he said.

  • Marketing brands vs. content: Newsmedia companies should be careful about separating their brand from content – especially in markets populated with strongly positioned brands. With the best newspapers, the product is more interesting than the marketing. “There’s just no point in separating the brand from content” in marketing communications for newspapers, he said. Because big national brands such as the Sun, Daily Telegraph, Daily Mail, and The Guardian own such passionate positions in the marketplace, grabbing market share will remain as difficult as ever.

I’m hoping to delve more deeply into the challenges and opportunities facing the U.K. newspaper industry at the Outlook 2010 conference October 21-23 in Liverpool put on by INMA and OPA Europe.