5 digital subscription trends for publishers, in charts

What's New in Publishing 20 Feb 2020 09:00

For many publishers, a key priority for the year ahead involves growing revenues from readers. This is nothing new. In recent years, the rise of paywalls and move to subscriptions has been a major trend across the media landscape. 

However, despite this focus, publishers need to ask tough questions about the potential – and sustainability – of this income stream. So, what do we know about the subscription landscape, and what questions should publishers be asking themselves? 

In this two part series, we look at the lie of the land and determine the most important strategic questions that publishers – large and small – need to address. 

To kick things off, here are five major subscription trends to note:

1: Growing subscription revenues is a priority

According to Journalism, Media, and Technology Trends and Predictions 2020, an annual report published by the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism (RISJ), half (50%) of the digital leaders indicated that subscriptions will be their main revenue focus. 

2: NYT and WSJ are leading the pack

3: Digital subscriptions doubled globally in 2018-19

4: Limits to growth? A bumpy road ahead for some

5: Gaining subscribers can be expensive

What this means for you: three main takeaways

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