South African editor points to Gen Z readership as 2023 focus

By Peter Bale


New Zealand and the U.K.


This year promises to be a turning point in the hybrid digital-print model with many publishers compelled to finally go digital-only, creating a wave of cuts and relaunches. It’s also a year to get to grips with how to reach the Gen Z audience, according to leading South African editor Mapula Nkosi’s views on where media is going this year.

“I think publishers will start to aggressively chase the Gen-Z audience so that they can seek to grow with them on their digital platforms,” Nkosi, managing editor at CityPress and a member of the advisory council behind the Newsroom Initiative, told me. 

Gen Z will continue to be an important audience for news media to reach.
Gen Z will continue to be an important audience for news media to reach.

“This will see more digital publishing hopefully become more creative in the formats of their content offerings,” she said. “We will see more creative content in the visual space to capture the attention of the Instagram, TikTok, and Twitter generation.”

In a newsletter at the end of last year, we discussed forecasts that rising paper prices and other costs will force publishers to accelerate digital change. That’s true in South Africa, too.

“The hybrid publishing model that is quite prevalent here will diminish as publishers convert print brands into digital-only brands, so we will see more retrenchments and closing down of legacy print brands and many magazines this year here,” she said.

“Digital-only news brands will strive to take the advertising pie away from TV here by creating sub-brands of news and content products that capitalise on their expertise in news or in lifestyle. A lot more breakthroughs will emerge here where news brands are looking at capturing audiences differently — including new audiences — and diversifying their revenue through these audio/visual sub-brands.”

What are your expectations? Let me know.

If you’d like to subscribe to my bi-weekly newsletter, INMA members can do so here.

About Peter Bale

By continuing to browse or by clicking “ACCEPT,” you agree to the storing of cookies on your device to enhance your site experience. To learn more about how we use cookies, please see our privacy policy.