‘Caught between a rock and a hard place’: Publishers confess their biggest concerns

It’s a tough time for publishers. While the rise of social media platforms has made it possible to reach large new audiences fast, it comes at a cost. Publishers no longer have sole control of their audience data on platforms like Facebook and Snapchat, and many fear being too dependent on Facebook to grow.

Top media executives from across Europe gathered in Nice, France, last week for Digiday’s Publishing Summit Europe. These issues and more surfaced as being top of mind.  They asked some of the attending publishers to share their biggest difficulty, granting them anonymity in exchange for candor. Here’s what they said:

Chasing tails
“Publishers are caught between a rock and a hard place. Do what the big platforms command, or go their own way and see their audience reduce to a level where agencies aren’t interested. What we should be doing is focusing the users who actually care about our products and engage with them. Look after those users rather than pursuing a big meaningless number via the platforms.”

Risky business
“If you continue to over rely on external platforms to build new audiences you could easily lose large swathes of once dependable traffic, as the one certainty in this industry is change and publishers need to maintain some sense of control.”

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