How Publishers Are Responding to Ad Blocking

Ad blocking and avoidance have their most immediate effects on publishers that miss out on ad revenues they would otherwise have received from serving content to ad blocking users. Ad avoidance is just one of the reasons the average non-walled-garden publisher is struggling with ad-based monetization, and alternative revenue strategies have been gaining importance in recent years.

For our latest report, “Consumer Attitudes on Marketing 2019,” we examined how publishers are being affected by continued growth.

Display ads are still the most important digital revenue stream for news publishers worldwide this year, according to polling by the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism at the University of Oxford. But subscriptions were a close second. Almost half of respondents indicated events were an importance source of revenues, and 31% pointed to ecommerce.

None of these revenue streams are new, and previous editions of this report have noted publisher work on all of them. Big-name publisher brands like The New York Times, The Washington Post and The Wall Street Journal now boast significant subscription revenue streams. Ecommerce-related revenues could include a variety of tactics—such as affiliate links, which publishers are finding some success with, according to reporting in outlets such as Digiday, Nieman Lab and Forbes.

Some publishers are also looking to become ad networks or technology vendors of their own, including Vox Media with its Chorus and Concert products and The Washington Post with its publishing platform Arc.

“There’s going to be a lot of different branching out in terms of looking into other revenue streams,” said Zack Dugow, founder and CEO at publisher monetization partner Insticator. “Certainly the tier one publishers with really strong brands will be able to do that successfully, for example by creating more of an events business, or creating more of a subscription business.…[Read More]




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