Is the digital content bubble about to burst? For some of the publishers chasing the broadest scale, maybe » Nieman Journalism Lab

By 2017, we have found in other research that 66 percent of a sample of major European newspapers operate pay models, and prominent digital-born news publishers across the continent (including De Correspondent, El Diario, and the pioneering Mediapart) operate paid or membership models. Broadcasters generally don’t (though CNN plans to introducing digital subscriptions), but they benefit from still significant offline revenues and can treat online as a loss-leading brand extension.Most of the digital-born news publishers who have sought international expansion have neither subscribers, members, nor offline revenues to sustain their operations. They rely on digital advertising. As Jean-Christophe Potocki, general manager at HuffPost France told us: “If we don’t fight this battle, given our model, we’re dead. Diversification is to provide extra, but our model is advertising and we need to fight it directly.”Not all of these outlets will win this fight and be able to sustain itself on advertising alone (just as not every newspaper or niche news site will make pay models work). The challenges they face are clear, and include:low average revenues per user, especially with the move from desktop to mobile accelerating;the rise of programmatic advertising, widely seen as depressing CPMs for display advertising;the competition from large technology companies, most significantly Google and Facebook, that attract a large share of online advertising;the use of ad-blockers as users are frustrated by intrusive ads and long load times.

Source: Is the digital content bubble about to burst? For some of the publishers chasing the broadest scale, maybe » Nieman Journalism Lab