If you’re looking to innovate and generate more revenue in 2020, these are the content products to try.
After months of focusing on non-stop pandemic coverage, the publishing industry is ready to innovate. According to a survey by BRAND United and Publishing Executive, the pandemic has sparked digital product innovation. Digital publishers are working to create more interactive resources and vehicles for engaging readers and generating revenue across a greater number of channels.
BRAND United’s survey of media companies found that 75% of publishers have launched new content products to help readers through the Covid-19 crisis. In addition to hosting virtual events in lieu of live events, publishers are also launching specialty newsletters, podcasts, and other digital resources designed to help readers navigate the world we’re in right now.
If you’re like most digital publishers, you’re probably wondering which of these content products generates the greatest ROI. You might also be wondering what you need to do to launch these content products at your own publication. Keep reading to find out.
3 New Content Products for Publishers
Virtual Demo Days
Virtual demo days are one of the content products best suited for niche publishers, including online magazine publishers, B2B publishers, and independent bloggers. Demo days can be hosted on the platform of the publisher’s choice, although Zoom and Instagram Live are particularly popular platforms right now.
Each event should focus on a specific topic. What that topic is will depend on the publisher’s niche. For example, a travel magazine might host a virtual demo day focusing on technology solutions for travel agents who are planning road trips for clients during Covid-19.
With live events shut down across most of the country, virtual events have filled the void for many publishers. Ticket sales may be lower with virtual events, but so are the overhead costs. With virtual events, publishers don’t have to pay for the cost of travel for speakers or renting a venue.
Virtual demo days give publishers an opportunity to solicit sponsorships from brands that are interested in connecting with the publisher’s audience, which can be quite lucrative. Sponsors will pay a premium to connect with audiences in a live format, and they are likely to stick around and purchase more traditional display advertising packages if these virtual events go well.
From a content perspective, publishers can record their virtual demo day events and offer them in a video on demand (VOD) format. Event recordings can also be used as promotional tools in social media posts.
We know how important email newsletters are to digital publishers. Email newsletters show above average conversion rates, and they provide publishers with an additional place to sell display advertising and sponsored content. As publishers try out new content products, themed newsletters are coming up as an option with a high ROI.
Just like the name implies, themed newsletters are regularly-scheduled newsletters focused on a specific theme. For a B2B publisher, it might make sense to launch a newsletter focused on how businesses are recovering from the Covid-19 pandemic, or a newsletter focused on sales strategies in the new world we’re living in today.
A recent study from LiveIntent found that publishers are seeing a surge in revenue from email newsletters. The newsletter categories with the highest bumps are shopping, home and garden, and business.
New podcasting tools are making it easier than ever for digital publishers to launch their own shows in an audio format. Not only do podcasts create deep levels of engagement, but they can also be used as a way to incentivize people to subscribe to the publication.
Publishers can make their podcasts available to subscribers-only, or they can offer ad-free versions of their podcasts to people who pay for premium memberships. Advertising revenue for podcasts can also be lucrative, depending on the size of the publisher’s audience.
(To learn more about how to launch a news podcast, click here.)
Although most podcasts come out on a weekly basis, niche publishers have the opportunity to record multiple episodes in one sitting. As always, creativity is the key to winning in the podcasting world. Publishers should pick a niche or a focus, and dig into the topic in recurring podcast episodes. Or, publishers can go the route that The New York Times has taken with its wildly successful podcast, The Daily, by giving reporters an opportunity to discuss their latest articles in an in-depth setting.
Creating a diversified revenue stream is about taking advantage of the latest trends in publishing and consumer culture, and sampling new content products to see what fits. If you’d like to learn even more about how to grow your digital publishing business, contact Web Publisher PRO.