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One-Minute MarketerHear Ye, Hear Ye, Newspapers are Growing

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Hear Ye, Hear Ye, Newspapers are Growing

Today marks a significant day in news coverage. On this day in 1784, the first daily newspaper in America was published (the Pennsylvania Packet & General Advertiser).

blog new york times

Many believe that newspapers have seen their last days. I do not believe it. The paper part may disappear, but trusted news aggregators and news reporters are even more important information sources in this age of fake news and accusations of fake news.

It seems newspapers are suffering on all fronts: Classifieds have drifted to Facebook Marketplace and Craigslist; display advertising is moving to digital; and free standing inserts (FSIs) may be going to direct mail. One large Midwest grocery chain has already stopped placing FSIs in local papers and is now using direct mail to distribute coupons.

However, with all this rather negative news, one chart did change my lead on this story.  The New York Times has surpassed 2 million digital subscriptions. The New York Times bucked all common thinking and established a pay wall that now provides nearly half a billion in subscription revenue.

If you look at the chart, how does the trend look to you? I see a steady, strong growth curve over the last six years. So maybe the idea of news “papers” is gone, but the idea of a trusted news aggregator with strong journalistic ethics is still alive and growing—and it’s making money.

Editorial Comment:

The Declaration of Independence was published for the first time in the Pennsylvania Packet. During the revolution, the prevailing government tried to suppress newspapers. Many did not survive the Revolutionary War. That may be the reason why the freedoms of the First Amendment are first and the most important freedoms to a democracy (and for those of you who don’t know, the First Amendment includes freedom of speech, press and religion).

Written by:

Mark wrote his first direct-mail fundraising letter in 1981 for the University of Iowa Center for Advancement. The effort raised a few million dollars in undiscovered wills and legacy gifts. From that day forward Mark discovered a love of the big idea that moves the needle. After 12 years at KWWL, Mark became a business owner as a co-founder of ME&V — rebranded as AMPERAGE in 2015. After 25 years of leading creative teams in video production, graphic design, PR, writing and web development, Mark transitioned out of ownership in 2021. Today he serves in an employee role as special projects consultant. He is creatively ambidextrous — son of an artist and engineer — and famous for distilling complex ideas down to a few words and a few visuals. Mark is a writer. When he found that many nonprofits struggled with complex branding puzzles, he wrote the book, “NonProfit-NonMarketing .” He also wrote a novel called “Reenactment.” Mark is an active blogger OneMinuteMarketer® with nearly 1,000 readers each week on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter. One of his most popular YouTube videos is on “How to Look Good on Zoom.” One of Mark’s fondest business memories was being named to INC 500 two times and attending the INC 500 conference with other winners. Mark is considered by some a Civil War expert (and that explains his novel). Mark also served as an adjunct professor in the business and in the communications departments at Wartburg College. Mark is a graduate of the University of Iowa and is currently vice president of the University of Iowa Journalism and Mass Communications Advisory Board. Mark is married to state Sen. Liz Mathis, and the two love to travel, even when it means being trapped by a volcano in the Czech Republic for three weeks.