Content and context are key to making money in media

/// Content and context are key to making money in media

March 20, 2013  |  Blog

Previewing some of the key talking points to be discussed the Changing Media Summit 2013, Paul Keenan, chief executive at Bauer Media shares his thoughts on the rise of content marketing and the challenge for media owners in charging for content online and putting a sense of urgency on the future of their business.

How do you think the media industry is adapting to an era where brands themselves are becoming publishers of content?

The rush by brands to publish content of their own is a reaction to the failure of the interruption advertising model. Our experience is that brands are looking for and will increasingly seek out a variety of content partners. Content creation can be hard going if it’s not your core business. If the brand in question fails to add value for the targeted consumer in that content, the objective of engagement or action will not be achieved.

We launched Bauer Access in 2010, our cross-platform service for commercial partners, to answer this need – to deliver marketing solutions to advertisers which leverage our content creation capability. It’s about like-minded brands accessing our creative talent and our insight to create content. In return, brands give us access to the truths that sit at the heart of the problem they are seeking to solve or the opportunity they are pursuing.

By fusing our individual expertise, media owner and brand both benefit.

What do you think is key to making digital content pay as print revenues decline?

I think we should focus on how media can make money out of all forms of content. Bauer makes a healthy profit out of media brands across magazines, radio, online, mobile, TV, events and social, for example.

The notion of ‘content is king’ has moved on; ‘content and context is king’ in this new connected world. Our starting point is always clarity on how a brand and content is different and better, a clear and simple proposition and a well thought through channel strategy.

We believe wholeheartedly in the paid for content model across our media brands. We look at the newspaper industry and are stunned at how it has eroded its business model by giving its content away for free online, surely consumers must be asked to pay for great content?

Mobile is the opportunity to reassess that move to free content across the media industry, not just newspapers. Mobile devices will offer content revenues through apps, but it is still about great content with the added twist of ensuring content is optimised by context – how and why will it be consumed. Fit for the device; tailored to the occasion – be it second screening; time filling or time killing or simply staying in touch.

The payment model may change – from a bundled product, to articles or features; from a magazine all about one subject/passion or lifestyle, to a custom built product, built from multiple magazines designed by the user about everything they are interested in. All options for payment are on the development table – up-front subscription, micropayment or all-you-can-eat flat fees. But to make money from media now, I repeat ‘content and context is king’.

What’s next for Bauer Media and what’s your message for the Changing Media Summit delegates?

Bauer is seeking out digital start-ups and entrepreneurs operating in our markets. We will invest time, brands and money. Our investments in social commerce start up Stork Up and the Collider 12 accelerator programme get us closer to exciting digital entrepreneurs. In addition our existing workforce is being encouraged to act like digital natives at work as well as at home. As a media owner with a young and digitally literate workforce this gives us a real opportunity to own our future.

My message for the summit is that media owners face one problem – putting enough sense of urgency on the future of their businesses. Spend too much time focusing/worrying about the problems of today and you will miss the opportunities of tomorrow.

Link: Content and context are key to making money in media

The Guardian – Chris Smith, Content Coordinator


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