Mon - 18.12.2017

Paton: Internet is good for newspapers

Paton: Internet is good for newspapers

John Paton, impreMedia Chairman and CEO, spoke about re-inventing newspaper companies for the new news ecology at the Newspapers: A Multi-Media, Growth Business session this morning at the 62nd World Newspaper Congress in Hyderabad.

The Spanish-language newspaper audience in the United States is booming - it is the country's fastest growing demographic and would be the world's third largest Spanish speaking country if it stood alone.

John Paton, impreMedia Chairman and CEO. Photo: Brian Powers, Western Integrated MediaimpreMedia, a 6-year-old company that has acquired the most reputable Spanish language newspapers in the U.S., some of which are nearly a century old, is growing along with its readers.

"Don't get me wrong here, I believe newspaper companies have a very bright future but as news companies where print is only one of many products and where each builds audience for the others," he said, giving the following advice:

- Be digital first and brands first. "Brands first because no matter the platform, the brands were trusted by our customers," Paton said.
- Cut the legacy model costs, be self funding. Operating costs have been reduced by 40 percent since 2006 by outsourcing printing, distribution and other measures.
- Effectively create new platforms to deliver more audience and new advertiser-desired revenue streams. "We would no longer be print centric."
- Invest in infrastructure and people with no new net cost.
- Change the valuation metrics applied to newspaper companies to reflect multimedia growth. To do so, the company set out to stabilize and grow print profit, earn 25 percent of profits from non-print products by 2011, and earn half of profits from non-print products by 2012.

1. Send SMS alerts
2. Release stories on the Web
3. Use social media to spread the word
4. Enhance with audio and video components and additional content
5. Create the newspaper itself
6. Recap, enhance, and repackage news for new products

Paton said newspapers will continue to be a key part of his company but that ImpreMedia is adjusting its operations to de-emphasize the overall importance of print. ImpreMedia is the U.S.'s largest Spanish-language online and print news publisher.

In a question-and-answer session after his remarks, Paton gave newspaper companies 10 years at most to restructure so that print newspapers account for only 30 percent of their business.

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Leah McBride Mensching


2009-12-02 11:40

Shaping the Future of the News Publishing

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