The continued downward spiral of print media advertising revenues has large American papers rethinking their strategy for survival. Unfortunately for consumers who prefer inky newsprint on their figertips and something to hold, the strategy of our local newspaper, the San Francisco Chronicle, is a massive price increase. The SF Chronicle, not bothering to announce the increase, raised their newsstand price from .50 to .75 a whopping 50% increase. Adding insult to injury, the paper is offering less information-for more.
Trend Away from Print
“Want Ad” Advertising for employment, real estate, and other consumer goods has been severely hampered by the influx of sites like Craig’s list, blogs, and other social media sites that provide more strategically targeted information and advertising for free.
Now readers who enjoy traditional print media will have to pay more for the privilege of buying a paper off the newsstand or from their local paperboy. The reason for this is the fact that online advertising revenue is taking over as the prime income stream for many newspapers.
Sfgate.com the online newspaper for the San Francisco Chronicle is a vibrant example of what many news agencies are beginning to realize. A news site like sfgate.com is a massive blog. News stories, advertising, want ads, and other media placed everyday makes for a massive SEO machine. The sheer volume of information placed on sfgate.com everyday makes it a high traffic blog-website that ranks high on Google.
The S.F. Chronicle has a solid path to advertising revenue via it’s sfgate.com site. The paper has a chance to survive as it moves it’s operations online providing a vibrant and viable news product.
The consumer wins because the sfgate.com site is the SF Chronicle paper. Everyword is online for any reader willing to go to the site. The win for consumers is that the online version is FREE. Consumers willing to read their paper online don’t spend a dime. Is that not what Web 2.0 is all about?