Newspapers Expect Higher Digital Revenue Stream

June 10, 2011

This article is included in these additional categories:

Creative & Formats | Media & Entertainment | Newspapers | Retail & E-Commerce | Technology

rji-revenue-stream-digital-june-2011.JPGUS newspapers generally expect the percentage of their revenue stream derived from digital products to grow substantially in the next three years, according to [pdf] an April 2011 study from the University of Missouri School of Journalism and Reynolds Journalism Institute. Results from “The Push to Paid” indicate that today, more than 50% of newspapers obtain 9% or less of their revenues from all digital products.

Close to another 25% obtain 10-14% of their revenues from digital products, and less than a combined 5% obtain 25% or more of their revenues digitally.

Digital Revenue in 3Yrs Expected to Look Different

rji-revenue-stream-digital-3-yrs-june-2011.JPGNewspaper publishers have high hopes for the short-term future of digital products, however. In three years, only approximately 20% of newspapers expect to obtain less than 10% of their revenues from digital products, while close to another 20% expect to derive 10-14% of their revenues digitally.

The biggest change is in the percentages who expect to obtain more than 25% of their revenues from digital products. More than 10% of newspapers expect that 25-29% of their revenues in three years will come from digital products, while slightly less than 9% predict 30-34% of revenues will be digitally generated. More than a combined 5% expect 35-40% of revenues will come from digital products.

More than 1 in 5 Newspapers Get 90-plus % of Revenues from Print

rji-revenue-stream-june-20111.JPGOn the other side of the newspaper revenue equation, almost 23% of newspapers report obtaining 90-100% of their revenues from print, with higher percentages obtaining 80-89% and 70-79%. Roughly 70% of newspapers derive 70% or more of their revenues from print, with more than another 10% obtaining 60-69% of their revenues from this channel.

Most Newspapers Expect 60-plus % of Revenues from Print in 3 Years

rji-revenue-stream-3-yrs-june-2011.JPGLooking ahead three years, about 50% of newspapers expect to receive between 60% and 79% of their revenues from print in three years, while another 15% expect to receive 80-89% and roughly 5% expect 90% or more of revenues to be generated by print. This means close to three in four newspapers still expect a sizable majority of revenues to come from print in the near future, despite the expected explosive growth of the digital revenue stream.

Harris: 8 in 10 Won’t Pay for Daily Online Paper

Eight in 10 US adults are willing to pay “nothing” per month to read a daily newspaper’s content online, according to an Adweek/Harris Poll conducted in March 2011. Of the one in five who would pay, 14% said they would pay between $1 and $10 per month while very few said that they would be willing to pay between $11 and $20 (4%) or more than $20 per month (2%).

About the Data: The University of Missouri School of Journalism and Reynolds Journalism Institute conducted phone interviews with 301 US newspaper publishers from April 1-18, 2011.


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