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The dirty secret in publishing: leaky paywalls
I've been talking to more and more publishers who say that LinkedIn is their #1 social traffic referrer.
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LinkedIn continues to build out its newsletter product, and I've heard anecdotally from creators who have seen a lot of success with it. But I always think it's worth pointing out that LinkedIn doesn't allow you to export your email list and under no circumstances should it be your sole newsletter distribution platform. My advice is that you publish some form of truncated version to your LinkedIn list and then encourage people to sign up on a real newsletter platform to receive the full version. [Social Media Today]
Kind of incredible that OnlyFans generates more revenue than Twitter did at its peak despite not being available on any major app store. [Insider]
The dirty secret in publishing is that, if a user is determined to get past your paywall, they can usually do so without much fuss. [Digiday]
Any local news startup launching today should probably be extremely email centric, with the majority of its content consumed in the inbox. [Press Gazette]
It seems like a no-brainer to me to block an AI-training bot that will do nothing to send you traffic and is instead hell-bent on training a tool that will siphon off your traffic. [Insider]
Amazing that it took until 2023 for on-demand audio to surpass linear audio. Maybe this is the tipping point that will unleash a flood of advertising revenue onto free music streaming and podcasts. [Edison Research]
G/O Media is truly exceptional at driving away its editorial talent. [Daily Beast]
I’m looking for more media entrepreneurs to feature on my newsletter and podcast
One of the things I really pride myself on is that I don’t just focus this newsletter on covering the handful of mainstream media companies that every other industry outlet features. Instead, I go the extra mile to find and interview media entrepreneurs who have been quietly killing it behind the scenes. In most cases, the operators I feature have completely bootstrapped their outlets.
In that vein, I’m looking for even more entrepreneurs to feature. Specifically, I’m looking for people succeeding in these areas:
Niche news sites
Video channels like YouTube, TikTok, and Instagram Reels
Interested in speaking to me? You can find my contact info over here. (please don’t simply hit reply to this newsletter because that’ll go to a different email address. )
More quick hits
A good profile of a literary critic who managed to become a mini celebrity within the world of book publishing. [Insider]
Twitter has never been a huge traffic driver to media outlets, and under Musk's ownership it's become less and less relevant to their audience growth strategies. What Musk never understood was that a lot of Twitter's value to users came from the fact that journalists hung out on there 24/7. [Digiday]
This is a much better streaming strategy for CNN than a standalone app. [Variety] CNN has always served as "ambient" television — the place you turn to when you're waiting for a TV show to start. The big challenge for Warner Bros Discovery is to recreate this ambient experience on Max.
The Threads web app is live! You can find my profile here: [@simondowens]
I don't know if I would make the recommendation to any traditional publishers to move their entire newsletter operations over to Substack, but I think it would benefit most publishers to at least launch one Substack-hosted newsletter given that the platform is quickly amassing its own community and social media ecosystem. [Press Gazette]
I've been talking to more and more publishers — especially in the B2B space — who say that LinkedIn is their #1 social traffic referrer. [Bloomberg]
Out of all the major platforms launched in the mid 2000s, none has retained its dominance — especially with young people — as much as YouTube. Why? I'm sure its early decision to begin sharing revenue with creators played a major role in attracting top creative talent. [Digiday]
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