INMA's editors, initiative leaders, experts, and volunteer leaders scour the world of media to find sources of inspiration about the business of journalism: trends, subject matter expertise, data, and more. Augment your INMA experience by perusing our recommended reports from third-party sources. We have vetted these thoroughly. They are global in nature or have global ramifications, the subject matter is unique, our experts determine this is a “best of” quality, and/or the report is freely available. If the report has too much of a sales component, it doesn't make the list. If you have a recommendation for INMA Recommends, e-mail email@example.com.
Recommended reading from INMA
News Consumption in the UK: 2022
Released: July 21, 2022 | Ofcom
Our view: Ofcom provides the latest in a series of reports on news consumption in the United Kingdom, a national snapshot of global trends: consumption of less legacy media and more digital media — specifically TikTok. The most interesting part of the survey is with 12- to 15-year-olds where you see a decent enough sample interested in news, but consumption patterns drifting to Instagram, TikTok, and YouTube.
Digital News Report 2022
Released: June 15, 2022 | Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism
Our view: The Reuters Institute’s latest Digital News Report further demonstrates how younger audiences have a weakening connection with news brands vs. platforms such as TikTok. The 164-page PDF report includes macro-trends and country-by-country trends, punctuated by a video overview of key findings, availability in HTML, and a Spanish-language companion piece. Less useful, yet building on the Digital News Report’s authority, are links to the past 10 years of reports.
After the Pandemic, Building Back a Stronger Media
Released: June 8, 2022 | UNESCO
Our view: In this 82-page handbook by Larry Kilman, learn about initiatives from media companies and support organisations worldwide: collaborative journalism internationally, fact-checking services, new business models, and entrepreneurial education young journalists. Of special note in the back-of-the-book “References and Resources” section is a unique list of media support organisations internationally.
Deprivation Study: What Is Life Like Without the BBC?
Released: June 1, 2022 | BBC
Our view: We include this 70-page report from the BBC about what life would be like without the BBC for multiple reasons: a) it’s a study that other media companies, notably public broadcasters, could replicate; b) while this could be self-serving, there is enough independence to give new insights (especially compared with seven years earlier; c) a key finding for us was the perception of the BBC as only a TV broadcaster changed as a result of the study. Worth a look, though it’s buried on a report page.
Finding the Funds for Journalism to Thrive
Released: May 17, 2022 | UNESCO
Our view: How policymakers should respond to crises that threaten the supply of independent journalism is the focus of this 18-page report. It includes 22 actionable recommendations and neatly ties “information as a public good” back to well-functioning societies.
Why People Don’t Pay for News: A Qualitative Study
Released: May 15, 2022 | SAGER
Our view: We don’t recommend many academic papers, yet understanding why people don’t pay for news is central to news media’s success today — and remains a misunderstood subject even after years of studies. Written by Tim Groot Kormelink of Vrije Universiteit in Amsterdam, the paper suggests Netflix and Spotify are central to understanding young adults’ willineness to pay for news, pricing confusion, and future scenarios where they might pay for news.
How Audiences Who Lack Trust In News Navigate Information on Digital Platforms
Released: April 4, 2022 | Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism
Our view: How audiences who lack trust in news media navigate the digital information environment such as social media, messaging apps, and search engines make sense of the news they encounter is the focus of this report from the Reuters Institute. This is a big topic among INMA members: how people with minimal trust in news sources and below-average interest in politics consume news. This report is available in English, Spanish, and Portuguese.
Tech Trends Report: News & Information
Released: March 16, 2022 | Future Today Institute
Our view: One of 14 volumes of the 2022 Tech Trend Report, the “News & Information” looks at techn trends influencing the future of journalism, media, and the business models supporting entertainment and news. The 43-page section of the report leans heavily into the metaverse, virtual spaces, digital subscriptions, AI, natural language search interfaces, sensory clickbait, media literacy programmes, social media, and media consolidation. More of an executive briefing for the c-suite than a deep dive for practitioners, all 14 volumes are available for free.
A Guide to the Post Third-Party Cookie Era
Released: March 1, 2022 | IAB Europe
Our view: In a thoughtful 78-page update on a 2-year-old news industry discussion, IAB Europe’s latest report on the pending phaseout of third-party cookies looks at the impact on stakeholders, the execution of digital advertising campaigns, replacement solutions, and how publishers can get involved in potential alternatives. This is a freely available report.
The Shakeout From Apple’s Privacy Update
Released: February 1, 2022 | Insider Intelligence | eMarketer
Our view: There are a number of reports that look at the rollout of AppTrackingTransparency (ATT) in iOS 14.5, which has severely impacted how publishers and advertisers track users and changed the mobile ad industry. This free report (with registration) burrows into how ATT is impacting forecasts for mobile ad revenue, how platforms, publishers, and advertisers have changed their strategies in response to the Apple moves, and strategy priorities. It’s a quick read – 12 pages total, with about half specifically dedicated to the subject.
Local Media Survival Guide 2022
Released: February 1, 2022 | International Press Institute
Our view: With local media the most fragile genres within the media spectrum, much of the focus has been on North American, European, and South Pacific media. Yet this report looked at local media in Asia, Africa, Latin America, the Middle East, and Eastern Europe based on 35 media leaders who are transitioning legacy media and creating new local media voices. This report from the International Press Institute (IPI) is available free with a single click — no registration required.
Journalism, Media, and Technology Trends and Predictions 2022
Released: January 10, 2022 | Reuters Institute
Our view: Accelerating digital transformation in the face of crumbling print economics, battling subscription fatigue, clawing back digital advertising from the Big Tech platforms, and where to prioritise the metaverse and cryptocurrencies are among the highlights of the Reuters Institute’s latest peek at the year ahead for media companies. As audiences turned away from news media in the past year, publishers must re-engage those lost audiences and build deeper relationships with regular news consumers. This free report is in HTML, PDF, and audio formats.
Schibsted Future Report 2022
Released: December 15, 2021 | Schibsted
Our view: Scandinavian publishing giant Schibsted releases its 60-page Future Report with a focus on tech, people, and business — an annual labour of love that fuses the company’s history with the broader trends impacting society. This year, Schibsted leans heavily into people and talent — then hits subjects like Big Tech, the metaverse, and computing capacity. Yet the bull’s eye of the report for INMA members is “Six Battles News Media Must Win” by INMA Board member Siv Juvik Tveitnes, executive vice president of news media for Schibsted. The free PDF is available online.
The Art and Science of Experimentation For Growth
Released: December 7, 2021 | FT Strategies
Our view: Emanating from a Google News Initiative (GNI) Subscriptions Lab for eight European news publishers in 2021, this report from FT Strategies looks at a new approach to experimentation — the magic behind it and how to experiment. Then, armed with the Financial Times’ North Star metric approach, the report breaks down Subscriptions Lab experiments of the European publishers. INMA partnered on the Subscriptions Lab and highly recommends this free report.
IAB Europe’s Guide to Native Advertising
Released: December 2, 2021 | Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) Europe
Our view: Since writing its first report on native advertising in 2016, IAB Europe has been at the epicenter of this fast-rising subject. In their latest state of native advertising report, update yourself on definitions, formats and placements, key considerations, best practices, and the future of native. Consider this an update report, with some new tie-backs to growth sectors such as e-commerce, CTV, and DOOH.
Three Steps to the Future
Released: December 1, 2021 | Benedict Evans
Our view: Ignore author and futurist Benedict Evans at your peril. In his annual presentation looking at macro and strategic trends in the tech industry, he breaks down “visions versus deployment and disruption”: the future (tech visions for 2030), the present (startups deploy the ideas of 2010s), and the past (old economy disrupted by ideas from the 2000s). Brace for the Metaverse, Web3, NFTs, VR and AR, and more. In a misery-loves-company moment, we even see how the disruption of newspapers is now happening across industries – take special note of e-commerce’s exponential impact on retail. Brace for 94 slides … but it’s worth it.
Media Moments 2021
Released: December 1, 2021 | What's New In Publishing
Our view: If a report’s title ever was precisely what the report is about, it is Media Moments 2021. The publisher literally takes 12 media-related subjects, provides an executive-level overview, and punctuates each moment with a case study. Among the moments covered: newsletters, Big Tech platforms, subscriptions, advertising, video, audio, trust, data and privacy, print, e-commerce, mergers and acquisitions, and emerging technologies. Nicely sourced material in the appendix. This report is free with registration.
Automated News at the BBC
Released: December 1, 2021 | BBC
Our view: Leave it to the United Kingdom’s public broadcaster, BBC, to share a white paper about its own experiments with automated news. A self-published best practice handbook on a difficult subject. The 23-page white paper could prove useful to peer media companies worldwide as it zeroes in on the “human vs. algorithm” debate in a thoughtful way. This is a free download.
Inflection Point International: A Study of the Impact, Innovation, Threats, and Sustainability of Digital Media Entrepreneurs in Latin America, Southeast Asia, and Africa
Released: November 16, 2021 | SembraMedia
Our view: Don’t let the crazy long report title fool you: This is a rare, data-fueled look at digital media in Latin America, Southeast Asia, and Africa – complete with a strong executive summary for the time-deprived among us. In regions under freedom of speech threats, the authors embraced some blunt talk about content and impact; media freedom and journalist safety; building business models; digital media teams; social media, technology, and innovation; and finally, a recommendations section.
2022 Media Trends and Predictions
Released: November 15, 2021 | Kantar
Our view: This 64-page Kantar report is important to news publishers for its focus on data — specifically what’s next in 2022 on cookie replacements, Big Tech’s expansion, experimentation with first-party data, the metaverse, and the always-popular ammunition for why it’s important to invest in your brand. The report also covers less vital subjects to news publishers, but it’s worth the free registration to download.
Solutions to America’s Local Journalism Crisis: Consolidated Literature Review
Released: October 21, 2021 | Harvard Kennedy School Shorenstein Center
Our view: Rarely does a consolidated literature review make INMA’s cut of “recommended reading,” but this look at the United States’ local journalism crisis breaks the rule. While we are struck that the media transformation playbook for major publishers has locked in, there is no easy solution for smaller community outlets. This review, which sometimes veers off from the “local media” focus, provides an overview of law and regulatory changes, evolving business models, distribution channels, news deserts and green shoots, the role of digital platforms, philanthropy, media in local communities, and user experience and operating models. It’s worth a read and a bookmark.
Activate Technology & Media Outlook 2022
Released: October 20, 2021 | Activate Consulting
Our view: Zoom out to 35,000 feet and see technology and media and the fissures that make up that universe: bedrocks like consumer spending, data, e-commerce, audio, and video … but also the bright, shiny subjects such as the metaverse, cryptocurrency, NFTs, sports betting, esports, and more. Pay special attention to the section on Super Users, an unusual subject in a report like this. This is 203-page report is free and open to the public.
Media Influence Matrix: Funding Journalism (United Kingdom)
Released: September 28, 2021 | CEU Democracy Institute’s Center for Media, Data, and Society (CMDS)
Our view: How journalism is funded in the United Kingdom is the focus of this 96-page report. While the report is free, it also is dense and best used by INMA members as a tool to zoom in on financial performance of media groups, data on subscriptions, profiles and data on sectors (TV, newspapers, online). Consider this praise for the constituent parts of the report.
Into the Metaverse
Released: September 14, 2021 | Wonderman Thompson
Our view: For those media companies keeping an eye on the future, this detailed report about the metaverse may prove valuable and timely. Think of the metaverse as a “digital third space” where more and more people are hanging out and where brands need to pay attention. While the metaverse doesn’t yet fully exist, Wunderman Thompson does a good job in this 93-page report. This is a free report that requires registration.
Overcoming Metrics Anxiety: New Guidelines for Content Data in Newsrooms
Released: September 13, 2021 | Reuters Institute
Our view: Newsrooms have come a long way in adopting real-time data analytics into their culture, but this new report from the Reuters Institute reminds us anxiety remains and there is much work to do. This 30-page text-heavy report hits in the bull’s eye for what continues to ail news media companies, and the Süddeutsche Zeitung author aims to show you a playbook: “good” journalism in the era of metrics, how to do the groundwork culturally, and how to actually use metrics to take action.
Overcoming Indifference: What Attitudes Towards News Tell Us About Building Trust
Released: September 9, 2021 | Reuters Institute
Our view: Another day, another fantastic, thoroughly researched report from the Reuters Institute – this time zooming in on trust in news. Unlike others in the trust space, the report’s title gives away the lead to the story: that “Overcoming Indifference” is a much bigger driver of low levels trust than, say, left vs. right anger. We particularly love the helicopter view of India vs. the United Kingdom vs. the United States vs. Brazil on the subject of trust – punctuated by the general, specific, and editorial challenges in the conclusion. Tons of nuances in this report. Reuters Institute provides everything free online – and provides an English PDF version and summaries in Spanish and Portuguese.
The Global Media Landscape
Released: September 1, 2021 | GWI
Our view: Global consultancy GWI burrows into how the pandemic has changed media habits in this 72-page report that requires free registration. The report gives a media consumption overview, then hits the broad landscape of all that that implies – with particular interest to INMA members in the news and ads/subscriptions sections. There also are chapters on TV/video, music/audio, and gaming.
Combating Information Manipulation: A Playbook for Elections and Beyond
Released: September 1, 2021 | National Democratic Institute
Our view: When we first saw 63 pages about information manipulation, our initial reaction was to pass on a recommendation. Yet this smart report by the International Republican Institute, the National Democratic Institute, and the Stanford Internet Observatory slows down the subject of information manipulation and is ideal for newsroom leaders who not only need a backgrounder but on how to actually use each section. The free report even includes a primer on how to report misinformation to Big Tech and social platforms, which is extremely helpful and promotes media/tech collaboration. (Also available in French, Spanish, and Arabic.)
Released: August 30, 2021 | DPA and BDZV
Our view: How young people in Germany discover and consume news and how contemporary news services can be developed for Generation Z is the focus of this comprehensive report from the German press agency, dpa, and the German Association of Digital Publishers and Newspaper Publishers, BDZV. This 154-page report in English looks at news literacy education in schools and recommendations on new news offerings, all based on a nationwide study in Germany that shows a deep information gap among young people. Echoing sentiments internationally, half of young people don’t consider it important to be informed about news and current events. Based on interviews with 50 experts, learn what can be done next. This is a free report that requires registration.
The Next Wave of Disruption: Emerging Market Media Use of Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning
Released: July 21, 2021 | IMS, The Fix, The CLIP
Our view: Leave it to INMA to make a report perfectly well focused on Latin America and Central and Eastern Europe to be about the rest of the global news industry. So here we go: While “The Next Wave of Disruption” focuses on closing the gap between emerging media markets (with “illiberal foundations”) and the rest of the world on artificial intelligence, machine learning, and data processing, this 63-page report does a smart job of distilling this emerging thought space for everyone in media: definitions, 10 tips for media to get into AI, talent acquisition around these subjects, AI/ML impacts on journalism, opportunities like automated content and subscription management, and more. An interesting section on Latin America gets very specific about use cases in data – a bonus. This is a free PDF download.
Doomscrolling, Monitoring, and Avoiding: News Use in COVID-19 Pandemic Lockdown
Released: July 16, 2021 | Journalism Studies
Our view: The paper had us at “doomscrolling,” which is based on how Norwegians balanced the competing needs for information and disconnection during the worst moments of the global pandemic. How did people toggle between news monitoring and avoidance? What lessons can publishers learn generally in sometimes endless and emotionally unsettling news – something we need to know in the best of times and the worst of times?
Power Shifts: Altering the Dynamics of the E&M Industry
Released: July 1, 2021 | PWC
Our view: Part of PWC’s Entertainment & Media Outlook 2021-2025 is a free report that looks at the power shifts altering the dynamics of entertainment and media. The report looks at shifts in sectors, generations, business models, portfolios, and the regulatory environment. The PWC Outlook is a US$3,300 report (segments at US$750) that includes this free perspective component. To download the free perspective report, scroll down to “2021 Outlook Perspectives.”
Newspapers Fact Sheet (U.S.)
Released: June 29, 2021 | Pew Research Center
Our view: A fact sheet on U.S. newspapers by the Pew Research Center contains an estimate on print newspaper circulation – a rarely discussed metric these days. The story isn’t good, yet Pew puts this in an 80-year context and rinses the topic with a look at those brands’ Web site unique visitors. Pew also looks at a six-decade overview of overall newspaper revenue before punctuating the fact sheet with the 16-year decline of newsroom employment in the United States. Sobering, but necessary read.
Digital News Report 2021
Released: June 23, 2021 | Reuters Institute
Our view: The 10th edition of the Digital News Report parses data from 46 markets worldwide and hones in on these key findings: trust in news grew during the pandemic, avoidance of news is growing, partisan news is rising, concerns about false information are growing even as social media remains strong, willingness to pay for news continues to inch upward though the national brands dominate, mobile aggregators continue to dominate in key geographies outside of Western countries, and podcast growth has slowed. This is mandatory reading for media professionals. It’s free and a daunting 164 pages.
6 Publishing Technologies That Will Make a Difference To Your Business
Released: June 22, 2021 | What’s New In Publishing
Our view: The pandemic accelerated the adoption of digital publishing technologies, and this report from What’s New In Publishing gives an overview of the technologies and vendors in the spaces of content analytics, first-party data, paywalls, e-commerce, newsletters, and podcasting. The report is free even if you have to provide basic information to retrieve the 29-page report. This is very relevant for publishers.
Do Novel Routines Stick After the Pandemic? The Formation of News Habits During COVID-19
Released: June 7, 2021 | Journalism Studies
Our view: How news habits changed during the COVID-19 pandemic is the subject of this paper written for Journalism Studies. The research comes from a study of 1,293 Dutch news users during the peak of the pandemic in The Netherlands. Keys to the paper, which you can read in HTML or PDF, are insights into news habits generally but during a disruptive crisis in particular.
Media KPIs That Matter
Released: May 18, 2021 | Association of National Advertisers (ANA)
Our view: An intriguing look at how advertisers measure success in marketing purchases with media. Among the key findings, you will find five emerging KPIs for media, and learn about “head fakes” for media. This report very much captures the ethos among advertisers that they aren’t buying media anymore … they are buying audiences. Most of the KPIs you will expect, and others might broaden your perspective and even your own company’s storyline. If you are time-pressed, read the “key findings” at the beginning and “conclusions” at the end. This is a 28-page report that is free.
The Future of Marketplaces 2021
Released: May 12, 2021 | Adevinta Ventures and Speedinvest
Our view: The state of marketplaces internationally is the focus of this report exploring a US$5 trillion industry that more and more publishers are becoming involved in. This PDF report looks at future trends and models of online marketplaces. This is a free report, though it requires providing your e-mail address. For those of us with trust issues, Adevinta is the former marketplace business of Nordic publisher Schibsted which was spun off a few years ago.
Publishers and Commerce 2021
Released: April 9, 2021 | eMarketer
Our view: A report by eMarketer mashes up publishers and their media content with retailer and brand partners as the affiliate channel continues to evolve. What makes this timely is e-commerce’s explosive growth during the pandemic. The report also teases the old news of affiliate network platforms being last-click attributable and commission-based (bad news) yet becoming more sophisticated with multi-touch attribution tools that reward publishers throughout the purchasing funnel. This is a US$1,000 report, yet if this is a subject in your bull’s eye it may be worth it. At minimum, the executive summary is worth a read.
What News Publishers Do To Retain Subscribers
Released: March 22, 2021 | American Press Institute
Our view: The American Press Institute surveyed news publishers across the United States to identify nine key strategies for retaining subscribers. This report in the form of a free-access long article brings out those findings augmented by insights about what publishers do and don’t do about retention and 31 effective subscriber retention ideas to steal. Good tactical benchmarking data that translates well internationally.
Future Today Institute’s 2021 Tech Trends Report
Released: March 16, 2021 | Future Today Institute
Our view: The 14th annual report breaks down 500 tech and science trends across multiple industry sectors – including a heavy lean into the media space. We strongly recommend that you download the Summary before diving deeper – excellent bulleted overview of the report. The most relevant reports for media executives: AI, scoring + recognition, new realities, work + culture + play, consumer electronics, government + policy, privacy + security, blockchain + fintech, and 5G + robots + mobility.
IAB Outlook: 2021 Digital Ad Ecosystem
Released: March 8, 2021 | Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB)
Our view: This report on the state of digital advertising is particularly relevant to news media companies and worth registering with IAB. Pay particular attention to the consumer focus section, forecasted digital advertising growth, consumer purchase patterns, the impact of machines, and other digital imperatives.
The Benchmark Series: The Powerful Impact of Placement
Released: March 1, 2021 | ThinkNewsBrands
Our view: The Benchmark Series is an advertising effectiveness study from MediaScience that shows advertising printed national and metro newspapers in Australia yields 8.5 times greater unprompted recall than the run of the Internet, print + digital news combinations generate 3.5 times greater brand lift, and ads in total news are 2.2 times better remembered than run of the Internet. Requires a quick registration and includes a three-year video synthesis.
2021 Digital Ad Ecosystem
Released: March 1, 2021 | Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB)
Our view: This 38-page IAB report looks at the changing consumer, forecasted growth in a fragmented and uncertain environment, unlocking the value of changes that are impacting the digital advertising-supported ecosystem, and additional advertising industry considerations and imperatives. To access this report for free, a registration is required.
The State of Digital Media (Q1 2021)
Released: February 16, 2021 | Polar
Our view: Polar CEO Kunal Gupta has shared his insights enough with INMA that we know to pay attention -- especially when it comes to ad spend and ad tech. This 26-slide report is distillation of distillations, our favourite type of report. Gupta focuses on trends worth paying attention to this year: social equity in advertising, "less is more" marketing, user privacy, creative over cookies, trust, small businesses, platform accountability, and the future of work. Inexplicably, the landing page for this report is Gupta's LinkedIn page, and we'll update the link if that changes.
The Millennial Mindset: 10 Factors That Drive Millennials’ Consumer Behaviour
Released: February 14, 2021 | Smart Cookie Media
Our view: A relevant, succinct overview from Somi Arian of Smart Cookie Media on the Millennial mindset, punctuated by “The Millennial Disruption” documentary. The de facto executive briefing on the subject looks at these factors: abundance of choice, speed of change, the influencer culture, diversity, careers, environmental factors, economic climate, access vs. ownership, health and well-being, and entertainment. Very relatable to news media companies.
Habit-Forming News Products
Released: February 12, 2021 | Twipe
Our view: As part of its “Reinventing Digital Editions” research series, technology company Twipe distills a lot of sources to produce a report that is “an essential understanding of habit formation for news consumption on digital platforms.” The 28-page report is case study-driven, yet focuses on the habit-forming loop, applications for the news industry, the habit formation canvas for news media products, how publishers develop reader habits, and best practices for developing habits with news products. As we at INMA are attention-challenged, Twipe also includes an excellent executive summary. You have to register with Twipe to get access to the report via an instant e-mail, yet the report is worth it.
Fjord Trends 2021
Released: February 1, 2021 | Accenture
Our view: A sort of meta-trends report by Accenture, the key theme for their 2021 edition is “mapping out the new territory” after the upending of the pandemic. Among the sub-themes in the PDF report are collective displacement, do it yourself innovation, reshaping team experiences, interaction wanderlust, a product theme called “liquid infrastructure,” and a leadership portion titled “empathy challenge.” Definitely at the 35,000-foot trend level, this is a primer for media companies trying to figure the impact of the pandemic on the consumer.
The Great Unbundling
Released: January 12, 2021 | Benedict Evans
Our view: Benedict Evans produces an annual presentation on the big trends in the tech industry, yet this year’s “Great Unbundling” leaned enough into media to make it on the INMA list. This presentation looks at how COVID broke tech habits and accelerated a great deal. The China angle on smartphones (being ahead of Europe and the United States) is intriguing – as is the movement in India, too. As tech enters its second half century, what are the ramifications to it becoming more of a regulated industry?
Journalism, Media, and Technology Trends and Predictions 2021
Released: January 7, 2021 | Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism
Our view: Author Nic Newman takes us deep inside fast-changing newsrooms worldwide with a look at the COVID-19 fallout, a big-picture look at Big Tech platform regulations and likely impacts on media, impartiality, and engagement strategies. The “headline” for the report is what media leaders internationally expect for the year ahead. For INMA members focused on the revenue side of our business, you will be interested to learn what’s up and what’s down in terms of money expectations.
Edelman Trust Barometer 2021
Released: January 1, 2021 | Edelman
Our view: The Edelman Trust Barometer enters its 21st year with a global pandemic-induced look at trust across institutions – including media. This year’s report – displayed in a 58-slide PDF deck – leans into misinformation and the rising mistrust of institutions and leaders worldwide. If you want to jump straight to media issues and trust, go to Slide 23 – yet it is vital to put the “raging infodemic feeds mistrust” section into a broader context with other societal institutions.
Magna Advertising Forecasts For 2021
Released: December 7, 2020 | Magna
Our view: INMA has historically relied on Magna advertising forecasts in its News Media Outlook reports, and we continue to recommend this annual report. In this latest version, see the surprising impacts of COVID-19 and expectations for a 2021 rebound. This press release is very revealing of the report’s top-line data, which can be excellent comparison points for a media company’s expectations for the year ahead. You can purchase a subscription to Magna’s full reports and databases at the bottom of this press release.
Trust In News Project: Perspectives On Trust In News In a Changing World
Released: December 3, 2020 | Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism
Our view: What better source about trust in media than the trusted Reuters Institute Trust In News Project? Solid landing page with a link providing an overview in English, Spanish, and Portuguese to the 28-page report based on interviews with 82 journalists and senior managers at media companies in Brazil, India, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Good distillation, especially the takeaways at the top.
Facebook Journalism Project Subscriber Retention Suite
Released: December 1, 2020 | Facebook Journalism Project
Our view: Navigating Facebook’s many tools related to subscriber retention is an uptown problem (much like INMA!), and the Facebook Journalism Project has distilled their suite of tools and best practices into a single hub: why retention is important, subscriptions in Instant Articles, account linking, Facebook Groups, advertising on Facebook, and off-platform strategies. Don’t be fooled by this distillation: slow down and read carefully because these boil down the pain points, solutions, and always refer back to a peer media company doing it right.
The Zero Party Data Strategy
Released: November 30, 2020 | Piano
Our view: Piano really nails the complicated subject of shifting away from reliance on third-party cookies in this report available in on-site e-book and downloadable PDF. “The Zero Party Data Strategy” succinctly walks us through 25 pages of the new digital advertising landscape, the rise of zero-party data, building a better value exchange, putting data to work, the future of advertising, building for scale, and what comes next. For the attention-deprived among us, Piano also includes a one-page executive summary.
Released: November 18, 2020 | WPP
Our view: The state of data from a macro-perspective is at the heart of this report by WPP that aims to tell its story through four lenses: the dataverse, data the decision maker, rebalancing control (regulation and social attitudes), and the professionalization of data. We are dazzled by the dataverse, but find the closing “professionalisation of data” likely is of more practical use to news publishers. This is free and a quick read at 18 pages.
Hearts and Minds: Harnessing Leadership, Culture, and Talent To Really Go Digital
Released: November 12, 2020 | Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism
Our view: Lucy Kueng is one of our favourite management consultants to media companies. She speaks our language and knows media at the DNA level. She speaks regularly with INMA members. In this book, she talks about subjects that don’t get enough attention on the road to digital transformation: leadership, people management, the reality of middle management, and truths behind elevating the media organisation to digital realities. Follow this link to an executive summary of the book, along with links to the HTML, PDF, and hard-copy versions.
Innovation In Media 2020-21: Monetisation
Released: November 10, 2020 | FIPP
Our view: What we like about this 39-page report from FIPP, historically a magazine association, comes on Page 3 with a tidy business model overview relevant to any media company looking to diversify revenue streams. From this checklist of business models comes deeper dives into the 13 models: subscription, advertising, data brokers, club, e-commerce, events, non-profit, agency, brand licensing, IT provider, educator, investor, and nostalgia.
Google News Initiative Reader Revenue Playbook
Released: November 1, 2020 | Google News Initiative
Our view: Cutting across all of the Google News Initiative’s reader revenue initiatives, this constantly updated playbook is a comprehensive look at digital subscriptions: big picture introduction, establishing foundations, developing and communicating your value proposition, optimising your user funnel, and planning for long-term success. The playbook works for beginners, those with intermediate experience, and even as a checklist for veterans deeper into their journey. It even contains some benchmarking and interactive features where you can plug in your own data. We can’t recommend this enough
Global Entertainment & Media Outlook 2020-2024
Released: September 20, 2020 | PwC
Our view: Zoom to 35,000 feet and breathe the rarified air of the broader media and entertainment industry to get your finger on the pulse of what’s happening across all media genres – and see where newspapers, magazines, TV, and digital fit into that broader picture. This is an excellent report for macro-trends. There is plenty of free information, notably a 28-page perspective and media segment findings. Also look out for country-by-country reports. Yet make no mistake: PwC wants you to register and pay for the bigger report which might make a lot of sense for many INMA members.
The Future of Media: A New Framework for Valuing Content
Released: September 4, 2020 | World Economic Forum
Our view: In multi-industry, multi-focused reports dating back 15+ years, the World Economic Forum looks at the broader media industry – far beyond the niche of news media – to suggest a new framework for valuing content. If you like surveying the media trends at 35,000 feet, this report is for you: new user experiences, harnessing data, “content democratized,” evolving business models, and more. WEF has created a “mini-site” for this report.
Gen Z: Attracting the Next Generation of News Consumers
Released: July 21, 2020 | CNN Newsource
Our view: Interesting report from CNN Newsource, the content syndication arm of the U.S.-based global broadcaster. This report is part of the “Latest Insights” section of CNN Newsource which looks at a hodgepodge of content and audience issues. The landing page gives you five takeaway recommendations, then bounces you to a 36-slide PDF presentation: defining Gen Z, their media behaviours, news consumption, challenges and remedies, and summary. We especially liked, inside “Challenges and remedies” the look at “combating a disengaged audience.”
Digital Media Trends Survey: COVID-19 Accelerates Subscriptions and Cancellations As Consumers Search for Value
Released: June 1, 2020 | Deloitte Center for Technology, Media & Telecommunications
Our view: This 28-page report leverage’s Deloitte’s unique vantage point on “how the pandemic has changed media consumption habits in the short-term and its potential long-term impact.” While the report dabbles in the big picture such as the new fluidity of media consumption and subscription fatigue, Deloitte puts special emphasis on streaming video subscriptions, video gaming growth, and video trends. Still worth a read to view outside of the news media box and relate trends back to our experiences. Viewable in HTML or PDF.
News Podcasts and the Opportunities for Publishers
Released: December 3, 2019 | Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism
Our view: This is likely the most authoritative strategic overview of where podcasts stand with news media companies – even if the report is pushing 2 years old. As the authors say this is “the most comprehensive study to date on the growth of news podcasts, explores their prevalence worldwide, what they are offering to audiences, and how publishers and platforms stand to benefit.” Good overview landing page punctuated by a 56-minute Webinar on the report. You can download the 48-page report on the landing page.
Small Is Beautiful: New Business Models for Digital Media
Released: May 1, 2019 | Shorenstein Center
Our view: This 47-page white paper for the Harvard Kennedy School’s Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics, and Public Policy suggests subscriptions are the way forward for news media, but that’s not the best part of this report for the media cynics among us. The first part of the white paper gives a nice overview of the old business model from whence we came – a valuable contextual piece. Kudos to detailed looks inside The Information and Axios in the United States and Prime News and Inside Paradeplatz in Switzerland.
Start Earning Trust
Released: January 1, 2019 | Trusting News
Our view: Produced by Trusting News – a project by the Reynolds Journalism Institute (RJI) and the American Press Institute (API) – this page is a concise look at “potential opportunities to demonstrate credibility by explaining news processes, coverage goals, and journalism ethics.” Yet pay special attention in the “Next” section to a 74-slide research deck that looks at trust in news in the United States – which is worth the entire price of admission (which is free, though consider signing up for their newsletter).