Many experts have predicted that one day printing presses will stop rolling. Think of a world with no newspapers. All news will be relayed through digital means. The news websites and social media will be the mainstream media channels. How will the media houses make money then? That is the main objective of this article.
This will remain the dominant means of making money even for the digital news channels.
Media houses with unique content will be in a good position to charge their readers for reading such content. This will call for a lineup of competent professionals to create content which sells.
To operate a fully-functional global news website, you will need a newsroom of 200 staff members composed of editors, writers, designers, data journalists, videographers and infographic experts. These are the experts required for the online operation. With this kind of staff, your website will be headed for the stars.
It is estimated that such a setup will cost you between $25 million and $30 million every year. This will be cheaper because there is no cost incurred in purchasing a printing line. You will incur costs on marketing, administration and promotion.
Assuming you have an audience of 5 million unique visitors every month. You will need excellent Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and reasonable Search Engine Marketing (SEM).
Solid audience and loyal following. Assume 10% of your visitors will pay.
13% cost of platform including transaction and database.
$44 million for paid subscribers
Advertising …………..$24 million
There is a lot that we can learn from sites such as Slashdot.org in terms of its staffing. This news website has 10 full time workers only. They generate about 30 million page views every month. This puts them at the forefront of technology websites. There is need for writers, programmers, editors and designers.
Huffington Post attracts over 200 million page views each month. It is currently the leading destination for online news. The website was sold for USD$1 billion. Its revenue was estimated to be $146 million in 2014. In simple words, the Huffington Post operates a newsroom with a very high turnover.
Huffington Post mastered SEO and the art of writing great stories right from the start. They base their stories on trending topics on Google. All their titles are keyword optimized to generate traffic.
Quality and Quantity
A part from churning out quality stories, quantity also helps. You can create a great website by hiring young writers to summarize leading stories reported by other news websites and publications. This is how industrial aggregation was born.
In summary, it is important to keep your website simple and make use of Open Source Software as opposed to expensive proprietary software. Always avoid hiring more people than you can possibly feed. If you follow these rules, you can make it with online news sites. Working lean and hard will never stop you from high quality reporting. All you need is imagination and plenty of energy and be willing to use them daily.
Analysis of posts per day from various websites:
|Website||No. of posts per day|
|Huffington Post (leading globally)||1,900|
Do you run a news website/blog? How many posts do you publish every day?