Being a proud member of Generation Z (often mistaken as a millennial), it’s very often that my first interaction with news is online and via apps. Whenever I think of the way my friends and I get our news, I think of legacy new sites linking to their articles through Twitter, someone posting a screenshot with a link on their Instagram, or receiving post notifications from any of my news apps.
From one of these connectors, I go to the news site and read over whatever article caught my attention. After analyzing the 2018 Pew Research Center’s State of the News Media data, I believe this is why the audience reach for digital native news outlets has decreased five percent in 2017. Many people, especially on social media are satisfied with reading the summary of the story through a tweet and a picture without clicking the article for the full picture.
With technology always evolving, the media has the tough task of staying on that ever-changing curve. The want for print publications is arguably hit or miss when trying to reach the public. Outlets are finding new ways to stay engaged with their ever-growing (at least by social media impression) audience, and one of those ways is having an app for the user’s cell phone.
Of the top 35 digital native news sites, 57 percent have an iOS or Android app for their users according to the Pew Research Center. Over 30 percent of these outlets offer both mobile platforms for their app, with an increase of outlets having just an iOS app (23%) than in 2017 (17%). From personal experience, I’m more likely to read whatever story it is, if I get a notification from the app. Anyone and everyone has an iPhone, so it’s not surprising that outlets are leaning to that market specifically.
My favorite part about this study was the growing economics behind digital advertising. Before 94 percent of these digital news outlets were on YouTube, and it was just people on there creating unique content, posting funny videos, music and creating a digital community for several markets of consumer. Once advertisers got a hint of this, and YouTubers began to make money off of having sponsored content, having reliable views, and a constant gain of subscribers I think it showed a lot of people that there is money to be made and it’s not just by having an advertisement play before getting to the written story.
I believe other social media platforms and users saw there was money to be made in the palm of their hands. The outlets in the study rely on social media for their outreach, with 100% of the outlets having an official Twitter and Facebook., According to eMarketer, in 2017 digital advertising grew to $90 billion, an $18 million increase from 2016. The gap between non-digital advertising has shrunk from $92 billion in 2011 to $26.5 billion in 2017. Within the next two to five years digital revenue will outweigh non-digital. Also, by this time there will be many more channels, and audience to cater to by phone and other technology that will only cause for a bigger increase in digital revenue.