Tag Archives: Jim Chisholm

#news2011: Lessons from ‘roadmap for news media’

Consultant Jim Chisholm gave a jam-packed presentation to the Global Editors Network news summit in Hong Kong today.

His presentation (which I will link to here once it is available) offered plenty of facts and figures about the state of the industry across all platforms, but focused on how improving the approach to digital content can also help provide a secure future for more traditional forms.

Here are just some of the messages I took away from his presentation and comments:

1. We have abandoned circulation

“There is no evidence that the internet is the cause of the circulation decline”, he said. According to the statistics for online given in his presentation the rate of ad spend per hour was £8.20 online but £23.50 in newspapers. And the time spent by the audience consuming media was still top for newspapers, although overall this is in decline.

Television is increasing its share but not time, the amount of time internet is consumed is leveling off. People are not spending more time [consuming news] despite all the platforms available.

Print circulation was also said to maintain a key share of revenues, but he said that it “has been forgotten”.

The reason it’s going down is because nobody cares. It is a really serious problem.

2. Mobile opportunities will be higher than predicted

Chrisholm told the conference that “forecasts suggest by 2017 mobile will deliver around 24 per cent of all digital advertising”, but “the forecasts are wrong”, he said, adding mobile use will be a lot higher.

Mobile is a second evolution.

As well as wireless capabilities mobile offers multimedia and location features that can exploit the personalisation trend. Also looking at tablets, he said growth in this area is “absolutely enormous” adding that Le Monde told him “reading times on tablets are as high as those reading print newspapers”.

3. Newsstands could be the way forward, not paywalls

Put simply, “paywalls will not work”, he told the audience. But the newsstand formula could be the answer.

It will work online if everyone works together [and offers content] all in one place. That is a solution that could work. In a competitive market people can choose to go from one place to another.

4. We need to be more obsessive about analytics

He told the audience of editors that journalists may not like to hear it but “the time has come … we have to be obsessive about analytics.”

Because of our reluctance to take on board the concept of analytics, that’s what’s holding back our ability to develop digital. We are not exploiting the medium in the way it is meant to be exploited.

… The reality is unless traditional news media adopt scientific approach to customer retention and intensity, they’re dead.

In conclusion on the topic of analytics he told the audience of editors “you can all do this,” and added that “tailored content will dramatically transform the industry”.

#soe09: Jim Chisholm – the five myths affecting UK newspapers

Jim Chisholm took the stage at the Society of Editors conference this morning to counter some of the doom and gloom for the industry predicted by previous speaker Claire Enders.

Five myths currently circulating in the UK newspaper industry can be dispelled, argued Chisholm, joint principal of iMedia Advisory Services:

1) “We’re all going to die.”
2) “Journalism is omnipotent and UK journalism is better than its competitors.”
3) “The internet is everything – good and bad.”
4) “Newspapers are so powerful that they have to be controlled, restricted and regulated.”
5) “It’s all inevitable.”

The full audio of Chisholm’s presentation will follow, but to round-up some key quotes:

  • “The Birmingham Post has been dead for 20 years (…) That paper has been a problem child for 20 years,” said Chisholm as an example. “But I don’t believe that 50 per cent of papers will be dead in five years time, it might be 10 per cent.”
  • “Newspapers’ circulation in this country can decline a long, long way before they become invaluable.”
  • Regional newspapers currently have a 11.3 per cent profit margin in the UK; nationals 8.2 per cent. Tesco’s profit margin is 8.2 per cent, but no one is predicting Tesco’s death, said Chisholm.
  • “This business doesn’t have a profit problem it has a debt problem.”
  • “UK newspapers are behind other markets in attracting digital revenues.”
  • “UK newspapers aren’t working together – phone up competitors quick and get working with them.”
  • “Go to the NLA and get them to have a single pricing mechanism, because I might pay for a service that gives me all of the newspapers together.”
  • “It’s true that fewer young people are reading, but it’s true that people’s newspaper readership is highest when you’re younger. It’s a myth that people start reading when they’re older.”