When digital works

The latest results from Informa, the business publisher, offer a glimmer of hope to at least some media owners with a large print legacy.

Informa has managed to double profit on lower sales. And one reason they’ve been able to do it is because 75% of their publising revenue is from digital products.

They’re in a good position because they provide specialist information. Lloyds List and Datamonitor are in their stable. And they have a strong subscriber base.

That’s very different to a national newspaper trying to charge for what looks like an undifferentiated product. We don’t know how many people are paying to read The Times Online but most guessestimates postulate a big drop since the paywall went up.

Informa shows it can work if you’ve got the right product.  And many publishers do. There are a lot specialist magazines that are still feeling their way to an online product. This should give them heart.

Say whatever else you will about digital products, they have a lower cost base.

So when they work, they really work.

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