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The parallels between Simon Owen’s interview subject – Philip Ideson from the Art of Procurement podcast – and Media Voices are uncanny. Simon says it took Philip five years of producing the podcast before he found a viable business model. We’re still working on it and the insider insights from this kind of origin story are gold dust.
You should listen to the whole interview, but there are three key takeaways:
Business models often lag audience growth: making compelling content doesn’t mean you’ve figured out what your audience will pay for.
Your core customers will often be a subset of your larger audience: don’t assume that the largest segment will produce the most revenue.
Use audience validation as a motivator: during the darkest of times, audience feedback keeps you going.
The reactions I’ve seen to this story are a very mixed bag. From Jeff Jarvis’s, “Eager to test it…” to Jessica Lessin’s, “Goodness gracious… anything that Google (or any AI) could write has no real original reporting value”. While we don’t know anything much about what the AI does yet, I’m sticking with Matt Pearce at the LA Times: “I am asking the people who lead our industry to not be chumps.”
This is exciting, though. Print revisited from the NME. I’m not daft enough to imagine that this will be anything like the old NME (please be like the old NME), but another music title making it’s way back onto the newsstands has to be seen as a positive, even if it’s only every couple months and I’m unlikely to have a clue who any of the cover stars are. Good vibes only.
INN is putting together a set of case studies that show how a group of non-profit news outlets have achieved revenue sustainability. This post summarises the eight most common themes and practices identified. Connections with communities, meeting critical information needs, the right audience platforms and investments in tech and revenue staff all feature.
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