What’s been happening in the world of digital publishing over the last week? Here’s your weekly round-up of news, announcements, product launches, and more.
Business Newsletter Industry Dive Is on Pace to Break $100 Million in Revenue
Business-centric newsletter publisher Industry Dive is on pace to generate between $105 and $110 million in revenue this year, a testament to the value of stitching together pockets of niche readership into a sustainable audience.
The publisher has a network of 53 business-centric newsletters serving 22 different industries. They reach 2.5 million free subscribers through its mix of 25 daily and 28 weekly email products, and the average open rate across the portfolio is 30%, according to chief executive officer Sean Griffey. The average open rate for newsletters in media and publishing is 22%, according to Mailchimp. Read more
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Why it matters: As the article quotes Brian Morrissey, a media analyst and author of The Rebooting newsletter, “The success of the company is largely a byproduct of its ability to execute a time-tested playbook for business media. It attracts an underserved audience of business professionals with its niche, free content, then connects that readership with brand partners looking to influence their purchase behavior.”
Google’s advertising tech targeted in European publishers’ complaint
Google on Friday was targeted in an antitrust complaint by the European Publishers Council over its digital advertising business, potentially strengthening EU antitrust chief Margrethe Vestager’s investigation into the issue.
Alphabet Inc’s Google made $147 billion in revenue from online ads in 2020, more than any other company in the world, with ads including search, YouTube and Gmail accounting for the bulk of its overall sales and profits. read more
About 16% of its revenue came from the company’s display or network business, in which other media companies use Google technology to sell ads on their website and apps. Read more
Why it matters: EPC Chairman Christian Van Thillo said in a statement: “Google has achieved end-to-end control of the ad tech value chain, boasting market shares as high as 90-100% in segments of the ad tech chain”
How can you judge the quality of a news outlet? Look at how politically diverse its audience is
Everyone has had times when they’re confronted with a story from an outlet they’ve never heard of and have to think: How much credence should I give this site’s stuff? And if that’s a problem for individuals, imagine how big a one it is for the algorithms.
That’s the backdrop for this new paper in Nature Human Behavior, by Saumya Bhadani, Shun Yamaya, Alessandro Flammini, Filippo Menczer, Giovanni Luca Ciampaglia, and Brendan Nyhan. It’s titled “Political audience diversity and news reliability in algorithmic ranking,” and it’s an attempt to gain some systematic signal from the noise of web traffic. Read more
Why it matters: The main takeaway: A news site with a highly partisan audience is less likely to be a good news site. It’s not impossible, to be clear — just less likely.
Print editions cut at Entertainment Weekly, InStyle, Health
Dotdash Meredith, the digital media company owned by Barry Diller’s publicly traded internet holding company IAC, is cutting the print editions to six Meredith titles, including EatingWell, Entertainment Weekly, Health, InStyle, Parents and People en Español, according to a staff memo obtained by Axios. Read more
Why it matters: As Sara Fischer explains: “IAC acquired roughly two dozen Meredith titles last year as a part of a $2.7 billion acquisition of Meredith’s national media group. At the time, Dotdash execs said they aimed to digitize the magazines and make them more lucrative by introducing new growth areas, like e-commerce. The deal created one of the largest food, home and lifestyle media companies in the world.”
Tumblr launches a tip jar feature to help bloggers make a buck
Tumblr is launching its second attempt at a monetization feature. Rolling out in the U.S. now and soon globally, Tumblr Tips will let bloggers receive one-time payments from their supporters.
Tumblr will not take a cut from these payments, though standard credit card fees (2.9% + $0.30) will apply. Tipping is available on web, iOS and Android, but the company told TechCrunch that Tumblr will not rely on the Apple and Google internal billing systems to facilitate mobile tips, which means that creators won’t lose an extra 30% to fees. Read more
Why it matters: As the article points out, “Though Tumblr has struggled to grow its user base since its fateful porn ban in 2018, the company now markets itself as a platform for Gen Z, who Tumblr says make up 48% of users.”
YouTube is adding new ways for creators to make money with Shorts and shopping
YouTube is expanding the ways creators can monetize their content, interact with viewers, and generate new ideas for their channels. The new features are being teased in a lengthy blog post by YouTube’s chief product officer, Neal Mohan, and will roll out throughout the year.
YouTube is also introducing a handful of other features this year that will help creators generate new content. New insights will be added to YouTube Studio that the company says will help creators understand how viewers are interacting with their contact and help spark ideas for new videos. Read more
Reliance invests $200 million in InMobi’s Glance
India’s Reliance Industries is investing $200 million in Glance, a lock screen content company backed by Alphabet and owned by ad-tech firm InMobi, to bring the service to new Jio smartphones this year, the companies said on Monday.
The investment, made through Reliance’s Jio Platforms unit, values Glance at $1.7 billion to $1.8 billion post-money, according to a source involved in the deal. Read more
Why it matters: Glance could be on “hundreds of millions” of Jio phones this year, InMobi Group founder and Chief Executive Officer Naveen Tewari said in a phone interview.