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Change in Print Media

Print Media Changing Focus to Video

August 30th, 2016   ||    by Susan Kuchinskas

There’s been an astounding shift from print media to video throughout the years. How astounding? YouTube’s prime-time audience now reaches more people aged eighteen to forty-five than the top ten TV shows combined, according to The Verge.

The rise in video consumption is equally prominent on Facebook, which now accounts for the lion’s share of all digital content viewing. Organic reach for publishers’ posts dropped from January to May 2016. But during that same period, reach for video grew by 800 percent, according to Adweek. No wonder Hearst, Condé Nast, and The New York Times are investing in original video production, notes Tubular Insights.

The emphasis on video is part of an overall shift among magazine publishers. While revenue for print newspapers is in decline, according to The World Bank, magazines are doing a better job at extending their reach—and revenue—from digital. They’re morphing into multimedia brands where digital hubs connect readers with original content as well as content from the print pub. (Magazines still garner around 45 percent of revenue from print advertising.)

Advertising Models

Video provides publishers with several advertising models:

  • Ads with video on the site
  • Advertising packages that include print, digital, and video
  • Custom video for advertisers
  • Product placements
  • Facebook Live streams

Video Opportunity

With eighteen different print-media magazines, Meredith is another publisher looking to video to increase revenue, according to DigiDay. Doubling its production outlet, Meredith’s 500 monthly videos now garner 80 million unique views. Flagship property Martha Stewart Living has been the biggest revenue generator, thanks to product placements. Meredith is also moving strongly into live video, hosted on Facebook Live.

New York Magazine has found that viral social videos can increase website engagement and has already transformed from a venerable print weekly to multimedia hub. It operates several digital properties that focus on fashion, food, and entertainment—and those channels sometimes contribute content to the print magazine.

Now, parent New York Media is turning to video, according to DigiDay. After researching other successful publications, New York Magazine adopted a news-driven model for its videos, rapidly producing content around breaking news and trending topics.

The videos will be seeded among stories on, Facebook will be a prime distribution platform. The publisher has found that the massive attention videos gain on Facebook translates to more followers—and more page views on the magazine website leading to more ad revenue there.

Facebook Live Ads

Some high-profile publishers and celebrities, including The New York Times and CNN, Deepak Chopra, and Gordon Ramsay, have signed deals to get paid by Facebook to furnish live-streaming video content, reports The Wall Street Journal. Soon, publishers may have another way to make money there. Facebook is testing mid-roll video ads in its Live streams, notes AdvertisingAge. Ads will be fifteen seconds or shorter and will be drawn from Facebook’s roster of promoted videos.

A Place for Print?

As can be seen from the relatively substantial proportion of revenue publishers garner from print media, it remains an important part of the advertising mix.

And it still works for advertisers. According to Business Wire, a test for the brand Crystal Light by Time Inc. and Nielsen Catalina Solutions, a multichannel ad targeting and measurement platform, found that print and digital advertising have synergies with TV, and that using multiple channels together had a positive, quantifiable impact on sales.

Yes, the media landscape is fragmenting, and consumers are continually increasing digital consumption. These examples show that successful media companies embrace fragmentation with a multichannel approach—no matter what channel they originated in.

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