Digital news subscriptions, CFO disagreements & readers come first

Published 12/01/2024 / FRESH INK

📰 Digital news subscriptions increase by 19% 

👨‍👩‍👦 True customer marketing is years away 

⛔️ CFOs disagree with the ‘godfathers of effectiveness’ 

🔎 Personalisation and Ad optimisation Top AI usage 

👩‍🏫 Readers come first with Google Rankings 

🫤 AI doesn’t know what a quote is 

Digital news subscriptions increase by 19%  

The average cost of a digital news subscription has increased by 19% over the past year, in the UK, according to Press Gazette’s latest analysis of 23 mayor paywalled publishers. Bloomberg’s annual digital subscription has increased by 50%, The News Stateman elevated by 84% and Mail+ has risen by 57%. And, the Financial Times remains the most expensive, at £369 per year.  

Press Gazette – Online news paywall inflation running at 20% in UK   

True customer marketing is years away  

Over a third (36%) of marketers admit they’re still four or more years away from achieving a ‘true customer-first approach’, according to Plinc. This is partly down to the fact that only 23% of marketing professionals believe leadership recognises customer marketing’s impact on business growth. And, most marketers (68%) admit they are struggling with inadequate resources and funding – restricting their ability to drive growth.  

Marketing Week – Marketing driving business growth, retail footfall, generative AI: 5 interesting stats to start your week –  

CFOs disagree with the ‘godfathers of effectiveness’  

The ideal budget split for balancing short-term sales with long-term brand building should be approximately 54% on demand generation and 46% on brand marketing, according to the ‘godfathers of effectiveness’ Binet and Field. Yet, a study by Transmission reveals a gap between CMOs and CFOs -with 64% of CMOs surveyed feeling that in times of fiscal uncertainty, brand marketing should be given a higher level of importance. Compared, to only 26% of CFOs agree with that statement. 

The Drum – How can CMOs find common ground with CFOs for B2B brand building in 2024?  

Personalisation and Ad optimisation top AI usage  

48% of marketers are planning to increase their investments in AI, with the main uses being in personalisation (38%) and ad optimisation (34%), according to Ascend2. Despite this, only 28% feel confident in their ability to use the technology. Alongside the lack of expertise, other challenges impacting adoption of AI in marketing include budget constraints (33%), ethical and privacy concerns (34%) and data quality and accessibility (33%). 

Media Post – AI Action: Marketers Are Boosting Their Spend In 2024   

Readers come first with Google Rankings 

Google has responded to the Verge’s article that Author bios and by-lines do not improve a website’s search engine ranking. It advises to put your readers first by creating the content they want to see and making it easily accessible. Doing this will increase the likelihood of being rewarded by the Google’s helpful content update – which aims to ensure users see original, insightful content, which has been created to educate.  

Search Engine Roundtable – Google: Author By-lines Don’t Help You Rank Better; Google Doesn’t Check Credentials  

AI doesn’t know what a quote is  

Journalists can benefit most from AI by identifying specific problems and setting up specialised “agents” – customised AI models – that address them. That’s one piece of feedback from Press Gazette’s panel, which also explored how Reuters are using a ‘good strong fence’ by using Microsoft Azure tools to experiment with ChatGPT. And while participants were optimistic, one notable limit for journalists who use Generative AI continues to be chatbot’s inability to understand quotes.  

Press Gazette – Generative AI in the newsroom: Tips and tactics for 2024 from Reuters, Newsquest and BBC  


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