Rethinking our content solutions in the face of emerging technology


Recent studies confirm mobile is helping people consume more news. According to Pew Research, 31% of tablet users said they spend more time with news since getting their mobile devices.

Good to know. But bad to know is that new technology and shrinking newsroom resources have created an opening for new producers.

The competition is getting tougher, thanks to new publishing tools provided by Contently and NewsCred that make it easy for any brand to produce content on its own.

Though mobile advertising grew 80% in 2012 to US$2.6 billion, only one ad segment is actually available to news: display.

News organisations must now compete aggressively with big firms such as Google and Yahoo for ad revenue. But what news company can afford to invest in targeting, which requires both huge tech investments and partnering on sharing revenue models? It isn’t enough to modernise the newsroom.

The new competitors don’t struggle about a press codex to separate the business of a sales department from what is going on in the newsroom. They bring these two puzzle pieces together. The big brands really appreciate this.

Buzzfeed creates a content environment that helps brands make their ads shareable. They do so by customising content in a way that “the brands speak the language of the Web,” founder and CEO Jonah Peretti said.

Voxmedia (“The Verge”), the 2013 publisher of the year in the United States, creates a community of authors by empowering them with publishing tools and even converting readers into authors.

Big brands can market these huge audiences directly, because they know all the marketing benchmarks needed – their interests, passions, and skills.

NewsCred buys content licenses from all over the world to provide high quality content directly to the brands’ Web sites without any costs for manual handling. Technology does this job automatically and in an excellent way.

Do these companies care what journalism and the freedom of press are all about? Not at all.

Do they offer content solutions and environments that big money spenders of media companies are looking for? Absolutely.

Should we ignore them? Never!

Media entrepreneurship means we need a shift in thinking how technology can support our business. Not focusing individual steps of our workflow to optimise the cost structure, but rethinking radically what is needed to provide content solutions, rather than just content pieces and pages.

It’s a general structure problem we face. And it has a great impact on the culture within media companies that are not ready to dare the next step.

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