Ken Kurson has been a longtime advocate of seeking to streamline different processes and incorporate technology in different forms in an effort to promote efficiency and expeditiousness when it comes to different industries that might otherwise be viewed as archaic or even outdated in some of their methodologies. The media industry by example has been an industry that has been rife for dramatic changes, for a very long time now. As the economic model of the media business has changed rapidly over the last few years, there has been a need for editors and publishers to implement new programs into place in the newsrooms in an effort to sustain their businesses’ balance sheets. For this reason there has been a lot of change and series of transitions throughout the process of seeking to create a sustainable business model for many journalism enterprises.
The transition from print to digital media as a platform has been one of the more common and popular decisions made by publishers and marketing staffs at various news properties, in a bid to ensure there is a proper and coordinated effort to keep a business model profitable and also sustainable. The changes at many of these properties have revolved around the justified desire to generate advertising revenue, while there has been a serious decline in print readership. As more and more consumers turn to the web and to the digital world in order to consume their news, there will continue to be this desire among publishers to be able to connect with their consumers in a way that’s most digestible and salient to their audiences.
Ken Kurson shares his views about this phenomenon in a way that’s understandable to the average consumer – no matter the constituency they might be originating from. Advertising revenue is ultimately the main and certainly the largest and most predominant source of revenue for media properties, no matter their backgrounds or the focus of their reporting. And as happens with any evolution no matter the form or medium, there is a thought-process among business executives revolving around adaptation – and what the best way to adjust to the changing circumstances, might be.
With digital media properties, there are other added benefits that have great value to the average publisher. The most immediate is the ability to really analyze the audience of the respective outlet and publication. Using analytics tools, a publisher is able to tell which articles are being read the longest, shared the most on social media, and which reporters are therefore the most popular among the property’s respective readerships.
This is an incredibly useful tool to publishers for a number of obvious reasons. Firstly, they are able to make calculations that are educated and well-informed about advertising that’s done in a targeted basis, based on the geographic and demographic makeup of their audiences. For instance, if there’s a younger audience that seems to be more committed as a part of the publication or news property’s overall audience-makeup they might then appeal to advertisers to companies that are looking to attract young people.
The same can be said of the publisher’s ability and knowledge to be able to generate content that’s a reflection of the tastes and desires of the audience, according to its makeup. If a publisher is able to interpret the analytics in a way that demonstrates that there is a certain beat, subject or topic that the periodical is covering, that is receiving a tremendous amount of interest over others, they may commission their reporters to focus on those specific topics with great vigor over others.
This is important for the obvious reasons – since it will help engender further interest among the readers, and further develop their loyalty to the respective news property, by extension. Another aspect in all this that is worthwhile considering, is the need for advertisers in the digital work to have this information. This information can be of great value to them in making their own decisions when it comes to choosing which news properties to work with.
Ken Kurson interprets this development as one that is on balance, very forward-looking and valuable to the media business as a whole. On one side, it will afford publishers the unique ability and opportunity to make more educated decisions about where they choose to employ their resources, as it concerns their paper’s reporting. And from the other side, they’ll be able to offer advertisers an ability to advertise in a more educated fashion. In this way, all parties win and are able to benefit from this latest development.