Friday, December 27, 2013

Media Winners and Losers

 2013 was only one of the first years of major upheavals which means that in 10 years, the media landscape will have very little in common with to day's world.

The winners this year are the more value added websites. Some are connected to newspapers such as the New York Times whose paying wall is a tremendous success thanks to a comprehensive marketing policy and a top quality newsroom with 1000 journalists. Others like Politico, Quartz or Mediapart in France are pure players carrying much looked for information.

Some sites are not looking for the best quality but their offer is attractive to many internaut. The best example is Buzzfeed which is spreading from the US all over Europe.

Among the many social networks, a mention for Twitter, easy to use, more discreet than Facebook and a good pick for the journalists.

The family of losers is, unfortunately growing. It started five years ago with the daily newspapers losing both circulation and advertising and downsizing permanently. Their future seems uncertain as their digital business is not thriving in a very competitive world. In France, le Monde is probably the only daily which can build up a prosperous website.

Now, it's the turn of the newsmagazines, a formula which is not user-friendly anymore. In the US Time hardly manages to survive. In Germany, Der Spiegel is in bad shape. In France, only two magazines will live out of four while weekly supplements of the dailies grow every year.

The rest of the magazines is still managing but not for very long. Some of them will simply be the print supplement of a pure player. Some will disappear or merge. TV and Women magazines which are far too many are specially threatened. The strategy of Springer, one of the best managed media groups, selling most of its print publications is a telling example.

And yet, people want to be informed and entertained. It means that the media industry will keep thriving but in  different ways, boosted by the initiatives of young pioneers who are still unknown.