Lightbulbs
Credit: Image by andresfranco.net Some rights reserved
At the International Newsroom Summit taking place in Berlin, Raju Narisetti, senior vice-president and deputy head of strategy of News Corporation, outlined nine lessons and key principles for publishers to take note of.

1. Readers are moving seamlessly between platforms

Readers do not care about the platform in the way publishers do, Narisetti said. They move seamlessly between print, desktop, tablet and mobile.

2. Digital advertising is not the saviour

Digital advertising is not going to lead to sustainability. There are 16 billion indexed web pages, he said, so advertisers have a wide choice as to how to market their wares.

3. Note the emergence of the 'privacy economy'

The more we know our audience, the more we can charge advertisers, he explained.

But there is often a leakage of data from our news sites as "newsrooms are fond of outsourcing". By adding content recommendation engines and other third-party widgets to sites, publishers hand over valuable data.

Third parties can then "harvest data from our readers and use it against us," Narisetti said, (a point also made in an earlier presentation by Archant's Paul Hood).

4. Paywalls are here to stay

Despite some sites pulling down the paywall, such as the Dallas Morning News in the US, paywalls are becoming more widespread.

Paywalls are one of many ways for publishers to bring in money. The paywall 2.0 model, for example, the next generation of paywall strategies also touched on by Newsonomics author Ken Doctor at the conference,, offers subscribers a range of products to choose from, such including cheaper options as can be seen at the New York Times.

5. 'News will have to go to readers, they don’t have to come to us'

With the rise of social media and referrals from various platforms, news sites must find readers rather than expect the audience to find them. "Journalists must be able to bring people to the journalism," Narisetti said.

6. Video offers 'a possible way out'

Revenue from video is increasingly important for some publishers, he explained, adding that it offers "a possible way out".

7. Mobile is a threat and an opportunity
 
Mobile is a threat or an opportunity, depending on how you see it, Narisetti said. It is hard to make money on mobile "but whether we like it or not, people are getting more and more mobile". He said the Wall Street Journal, a News Corp title, gets 36.4 per cent of visitors from mobile and tablets.

8. 'Great journalism matters – but how readers experience that will matter more'

News outlets cannot just offer great content, they must be able to offer a great experience with that content, Narisetti said. We spoke to him a year ago in more detail about how publishers should approach the content experience.

Creating a great user experience requires "combining technology and journalist teams", he told the conference this week. It is “a very profound challenge”, said Narisetti, but it is this experience that "will enable us to retain and grow audiences".

9. 'Newsrooms are now facing a new competitor: our advertisers'

While some publishers see huge potential in native advertising, when advertisers pay for stories which appear within a reader's newsfeed, this development means we are now competing with advertisers for people's time and attention.

"Smart brands are creating compelling stories," Narisetti explained, "They are not getting into the news business, but are getting into the storytelling business."

He said publishers must therefore figure out the “rules to live by”.

Journalism.co.uk is at the World Publishing Expo in Berlin. Follow @SarahMarshall3 / @johncthompson / #wpe13 for updates. The 'live notes' for the session are at this link.

Free daily newsletter

If you like our news and feature articles, you can sign up to receive our free daily (Mon-Fri) email newsletter (mobile friendly).

blog comments powered by Disqus