Is Facebook more influential than legacy media?

Welcome! I'm Simon Owens and this is my media newsletter. You can subscribe by clicking on this handy little button:

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How Serial Box is disrupting traditional book publishing

Serial Box takes the techniques of TV production and applies them to book publishing. In doing so, it's developed an incredibly innovative product. [link]

BuzzFeed to Acquire HuffPost in Stock Deal With Verizon Media

This news just broke and I’m still digesting it, but I figured I should include it. One thing I will note: BuzzFeed just hit profitability for the first time since 2014, which probably caused a lot of relief for its investors. This HuffPost acquisition is probably going to push it back into the red for quite some time. [link]

Engagement beats scale: Inside Morning Brew’s approach to subscriber growth

"We test our subject lines four ways every morning. Each of the four subject lines is sent to 3% segments of our audience at 5am. The winning subject line by measure of opens gets sent to the remaining 88% at 6am." [link]

Apple is reducing the cut it takes from most news publishers’ subscriptions

How much subscription revenue are news publishers generating directly through their mobile apps? I doubt it's very much. I'm guessing most users download the apps after they've already become subscribers. [link]

This is where the ad would go…

…if this newsletter had advertising. But I decided to forgo advertising with both my newsletter and podcast so I could avoid incentives that would favor growth at the expense of quality. If you want to support the work I do here AND get case study interviews delivered to your inbox, please subscribe. Here are some case studies you may have missed out on.

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  2. Why you should adapt your podcast episodes into multiple formats

  3. This media company merged local news with content marketing

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Bleacher Report is drafting a commerce strategy that’s growth plan hinges on fan fervor for exclusive merchandise

Publishers haven't just doubled down on ecommerce during Covid. Their ecommerce operations are getting much more sophisticated. It's not just about affiliate links anymore. [link]

Facebook Is the ‘Mainstream Media’ Now

How do you quantify Facebook's influence and compare it to the influence of legacy media? It's something that's hard to do since everyone's Newsfeed is different. How do you compare it to the influence of, say, Twitter? [link]

Speaking of Facebook

I have a private Facebook group that I only promote on this newsletter. I post pretty often to it and there are hundreds of people in it who work in media. We have some pretty vibrant discussions every day about industry news and best practices. Go here to join. [link]

YouTube Will Now Serve Ads On Channels That Aren’t Eligible For Its Partner Program — Though Creators Won’t Earn A Cut

I could see this pissing off YouTubers who purposefully keep ads off their channels for UX reasons. What happens if you're running a brand YouTube channel and suddenly start seeing pre-roll ads for your competitors running against your videos? [link]

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