News Corp sees Instagram as threat in fight for consumer eyes

How to win readers that 'automatically default into free'

News Corp believes it can monetize content and beat free alternative sources by providing easy-to-access and in-depth content, according to Darren Stein, general manager of insights, analytics and planning for News Corp Australia.

News Corp said in a recent filing at the US Securities and Exchange Commission that it experienced a 22 per cent decline in Australian newspaper revenues between July and September.

The company is up against both free user-generated content and free ad-funded content, Stein said in remarks to the ADMA Engage conference in Sydney on 12 November. “The challenge for us is that the brands [that are free] are huge global brands that everyone is familiar with,” he said.

Those brands include Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram and YouTube. “You have to be so differentiated now… It’s a much tougher challenge than it’s ever been before,” he commented.

Instagram is especially a threat because, unlike with a tweet or other Facebook update, users are much less likely to verify a photograph’s truth by checking a news website, Stein said.

“If you see a photo, it has to be true,” he said. “That could be a risk factor if we don’t get our act together in that space.”

Companies still not strategic enough around social media: Report
Social media marketing on the rise as RPV value leaps
More Australians are using mobiles to connect to social media

Also, Stein referred to what he called the ‘WTF dilemma’, in which 18 to 34 year-old consumers are the most likely to pay for online content, but also the most likely to expect everything online to be free.

“No matter how good your offer is, they will automatically default into free,” he claimed.

That’s not to say people won’t pay for content ever, however. People will pay if content is always up to date and available, wherever and whenever they want it, he said. Also, they will pay if the content provides depth for when the consumer wants more information, and if the content is easy to access and find.

By monitoring consumer behaviour and understanding how they get the news, it is possible to trigger targeted content that is more likely to be relevant to the user, he said.

News Corp is still in the middle of a journey to better understand its market and the consumer experience, Stein said. “I don’t want anyone to think today that News has got it cracked.

“We now know more than ever before about the consumers of our products.” News Corp started from a “low base, but we’re not on a low base anymore,” he said.

One major trend News is watching is the explosion of connected devices, especially mobile ones, Stein said. By 2014, the number of networked devices will be double the global population, he said, citing a statistic from Intel.

In addition, video is the most popular kind of content, and “everyone is a content creator”, he said.

Adam Good, Telstra Media director of digital media and content, said in separate remarks that Telstra is focused on the multi-screen experience. He cited the four main screens as the smartphone, tablet, TV and PC/laptop, which together they represent 90 per cent of all media interactions. The remaining 10 per cent include radio, newspaper and magazines.

“You do have to think mobile first,” said Good. “It is the device that is on us all the time.”

While most people always carry their smartphone and always have it switched on, only about a quarter of tablet owners carry their tablet at all times of the day, he said. However, people are increasingly using tablets for things they used to do on smartphones and especially PCs.

Good agreed with Stein that video consumption is growing at a phenomenal rate. Most video consumption is on the PC but it is also growing on the tablet and smartphone, he said.

“We’re seeing our network inundated with content consumption.”

Follow CMO on Twitter: @CMOAustralia, take part in the CMO Australia conversation on LinkedIn: CMO Australia, or join us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CMOAustralia

Signup to CMO’s new email newsletter to receive your weekly dose of targeted content for the modern marketing chief.

Follow Adam Bender on Twitter: @WatchAdam

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Blog Posts

3 marketing mistakes to overcome when courting prospective customers

Marketing that urges respondents to ‘buy now’ is a little like asking someone to marry you on your first date. At any time, only 3 per cent of the market is looking for what you’re selling, so the chances of your date randomly being ‘The One’ is pretty slim.

Sabri Suby

Founder, King Kong

Why are we dubious about deep learning?

The prospect of deep learning gives those of us in the industry something to get really excited about, and something to be nervous about, at the same time.

Katja Forbes

Founder and chief, sfyte

Why you can’t afford to fail at CX in 2019

In 1976 Apple launched. The business would go on to change the game, setting the bar for customer experience (CX). Seamless customer experience and intuitive designs gave customers exactly what they wanted, making other service experiences pale in comparison.

Damian Kernahan

Founder and CEO, Proto Partners

RIP holden

Max Polding

Marketing professor: For Holden, brand nostalgia ain’t what it used to be

Read more

Where does the claim that 2 million Australians have tested come from ? Anecdotal information suggests that this is way off the mark.

David Andersen

DNA-based marketing: The next big thing?

Read more

Thank you for the info , being part of a digital marketing agency in kerala , this proved handy and get to know with upcoming trends. htt...

Dotz Web Technologies

Predictions: 9 digital marketing trends for 2019

Read more

So who then is correct? The Research or The skilled Digital people.

Anene

Report reveals Australia faces digital skills shortage

Read more

The blogs are really appreciable and one can trust the knowledge and information provided in the writing.The article you do produce on a ...

Prince Arora

5 brand strategy lessons from Gelato Messina

Read more

Latest Podcast

More podcasts

Sign in