Jan. 15, 2014

What does mobile mean for the newspaper industry?

Is mobile the future of journalism? It is certainly one of the industry’s biggest buzzwords. Pew reports that 56 percent of U.S. adults own smartphones, and 34 percent own tablets. As mobile sales continue to skyrocket and new research on use and behaviors is revealed, it becomes crystal clear that there is great promise in leveraging mobile platforms for the newspaper industry.More

NNN CEO Ray Chelstowski to speak during NAA mediaXchange 2014

Newspaper National Network CEO Ray Chelstowski will be a featured speaker at NAA mediaXchange 2014, which will take place on March 16-19 at the Hyatt Regency in Denver. Chelstowski will present during a session titled, “The Power of Newspaper Media: Why it works and what works best.” The conference will feature industry leaders addressing key topics including emerging digital trends, evolving revenue strategies and the transformation of news media.More

More than 30 advertisers and agencies announced for NAA mediaXchange

Each year, the Advertiser Roundtable and advertiser meetings are an important and popular part of the NAA mediaXchange event. We are pleased to announce the initial list of advertisers and agencies that have confirmed their attendance at the upcoming conference, which includes more than 20 advertisers and agencies, for a combined total of more than 30 companies represented.More

Breakout Sessions available for sponsors at NAA mediaXchange

The breakout sessions at NAA mediaXchange 2014 allow companies that provide products or services in the newspaper industry to present new and innovative information. These sessions give sponsors the unique opportunity for a 45-minute presentation to key media, newspapers and advertising executives. Presentations must fit into one of the following categories: audience/circulation, digital, advertising/revenue or print.More

The newsonomics of momentum in the Wall Street Journal/New York Times battle
Nieman Journalism Lab
As we look back at 2013 — and forward to 2014 — we see that The Wall Street Journal, an innovative leader in the digital news business, seems to have lost momentum in its titanic battle with The New York Times.  When Rupert Murdoch bought the Journal and its parent Dow Jones six years ago, he declared that war, aiming to blur the historic line between a business newspaper and a general interest one. The declaration was pure Rupert: part real animus, part envy, part bluff, and wholly aimed at winner-take-all.More

The Boston Globe nicks a page from the Orange County Register playbook and pushes subscribing as a civic good
Nieman Journalism Lab
The Orange County Register showered its 124,000 seven-day print subscribers with golden envelopes in November. In each envelope: a check for $100, made out to the Register. Subscribers were asked to pick their favorite local nonprofit or charity, endorse the check, and send it back to the paper. A “massive number” of subscribers responded, and 1,300 nonprofits are about to enjoy the fruits of the campaign. No, the nonprofits don’t get cash; they get advertising in the Register’s print or digital products.More

Chicago Sun-Times to test Bitcoin and Twitter paywall with startup BitWall
The Domains
The Chicago Sun-Times is testing a social paywall that will accept both tweets and Bitcoin in partnership with the content monetization startup BitWall. For 24 hours on Feb. 1, Chicago Sun-Times readers will be prompted to donate Bitcoins to or tweet about the Taproot Foundation to test the functionality and acceptance of Bitcoins on the site. The Taproot Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that helps design, marketing, IT, strategic management, and HR professionals do pro bono work for other nonprofits. BitWall, based in San Francisco, works with news sites to monetize content in innovative ways while helping increase newspapers’ social visibility via tweets.More

Consumers still trust traditional media ads more than online ads
Newspaper ads are still the most trusted form of paid media in North America, according to a recent Nielsen survey. More than half of respondents say they trust traditional advertising platforms such as newspaper, magazine, TV, radio and billboard. However, all new media platforms mentioned in the survey, including search, online video, social media, mobile display and online banners, received a less than 50 percent trust rating.More

Native advertising and programmatic buying: Predictions for 2014
Native advertising and programmatic buying were all the rage in 2013 — and for good reason. According to eMarketer, native ad spending will exceed $3 billion in just three years. Publishers are trying to take advantage, of course, with nearly 75 percent now offering online native ads across their sites. And why not? BuzzFeed, the poster child for native, is both profitable and growing at a time when many media companies, new and old alike, are finding it increasingly difficult to do either of those things.More

Skimping on fees and avoiding journalists: Are publishers doing native on the cheap?
From publishers to creative agencies to writer networks, many seem to be making money from native advertising. But one group that doesn’t always share equally in the booty is journalists. While some are paying standard freelance rates or more to those who create native ads, some bad apples are skimping on fees or avoiding hiring journalists altogether. One brand marketer told of an established news organization promising native content produced by its top journalists but that ultimately used marketing freelancers. “They represented themselves as giving access to their editorial staff,” the exec said. “Then they delivered articles written by copywriters instead of journalists.”More

Twitter users: Expect to see a new web design soon
Venture Beat
Twitter gave its web presence an upgrade, which it says will mimic its iOS and Android applications. Overall the changes are small, though they do show that Twitter — like many social networks including Facebook — are starting to care more about their mobile presence. Perhaps even more than their Web presence. Brands likely will want to keep their looks cohesive and easy to access for those who don’t have the official app downloaded.More

After a number of false starts, Branch gets acquired by Facebook to help build smart conversations
Creating a new way of engaging in smart conversation online is not an easy task — just ask Josh Miller, the co-founder and CEO of Branch and Potluck, who has been trying in various ways to do just that for almost two years now, ever since he got funded by former Twitter executives Evan Williams and Biz Stone. Now he and his team get to do the same thing, but from inside Facebook: Miller recently announced that the startup has been acquired by the giant social network in a deal that several sources estimate is worth about $15 million.More

Personalized digital magazine app Flipboard aims for 150 million users
The Guardian
Personalized digital magazine app Flipboard is aiming to pass 150 million users in 2014, thanks to enhanced discovery and search tools that will allow users to better explore the 5 million individual online magazines already created. The company, founded in 2009 by Mike McCue, former chief executive of telephone app specialist Tellme, and Evan Doll, once senior iPhone engineer at Apple, launched "the world's first social magazine" for iPad in 2010. The app allowed users to create digital magazines, which mimic the experience of a print publication, from updates on Facebook and Twitter.More

What does mobile mean for the newspaper industry?
Is mobile the future of journalism? It is certainly one of the industry’s biggest buzzwords. Pew reports that 56 percent of U.S. adults own smartphones, and 34 percent own tablets. As mobile sales continue to skyrocket and new research on use and behaviors is revealed, it becomes crystal clear that there is great promise in leveraging mobile platforms for the newspaper industry.More

How the new postal rates can help you grow TMC revenue
The Postal Regulatory Commission delivered mailers an unwelcome present, granting the U.S. Postal Service’s request for an “exigent” rate surcharge on top of the normal, annual price cap adjustment approved in October. As a result, postal rates across all classes of mail will increase by an average of 6 percent.More

How the Alabama Media Group made the holiday season grand
Everyone shops in December. For those in Alabama, the stockings were a bit fuller thanks to the deals found in their local newspaper. On the Wednesday before Thanksgiving, the Alabama Media Group — owner of The Birmingham News, The Huntsville Times, Mobile’s Press-Register — set up shop at eight different locations for a presale of the heaviest newspaper of the year.More

Newspaper to put all reporters through social media boot camp
One of the country's oldest big city newspapers, the San Francisco Chronicle, is set to announce a radical plan to arrest circulation decline and remain relevant in the digital age, Mashable has learned. Audrey Cooper, the first female managing editor in the paper's 148-year history, will require all staff to enter what is being described as a startup-style incubator. In a plush off-site office procured from the paper's Food and Wine section, journalists will undergo two months of rigorous training — in effect, a digital and social media boot camp.More

Newspaper PDF replica service bets on future of print-style digital reading
Alex Gruntsev, EVP and chief innovation officer of PressReader, made a compelling case in a phone interview that his “Netflix-style” subscription service — $29.95 per month — fills a niche in online news publishing by presenting news in a form that many automated aggregators cannot. PressReader, formerly NewspaperDirect, has long provided PDF replicas mainly as a specialty business, but now it’s focusing on a wider consumer audience. “For just your morning routine, to open a PC was difficult,” Gruntsev said. “But in 2010, with the first iPad, the experience of reading dramatically changed, and it became way more appealing to the average reader.”More

Forbes launches social app
News & Tech
Forbes launched mini-social network “Stream” within its iOS app. The technology, created by N.Y.-based tech startup MAZ, enables readers to save and share visual content with other readers and discover content from Forbes magazine and within the app. Users can also interact with other Forbes readers and cut out anything they see on the screen with their fingers, share and save content to the public-facing Forbes Stream, or to their own personal stream. Readers can also share to other social-media platforms. More