This is the last blog post of 2014 for TheMarioBlog. We will resume publication on Monday, January 5, 2015

The year that was. I have revisited the archives of TheMarioBlog to take a look at what I forecast as major centerpieces for our industry in 2014.

The headline on my last blog post of 2013 said it best:

In 2014: time to start thinking mobile first strategy

Specifically, I wrote that:

I urge publishers to think in terms of mobile first strategies. I remind clients at every workshop that they need to think beyond desktop computers and their own websites, and to think of mobile platform offerings that enhance and facilitate news consumption for their audiences, but that also bring about new forms of storytelling (especially for the tablet).
This, in my view, will be the challenge and the opportunity for the new year. Regardless of the size of your newspaper or magazine, you must be thinking mobile first.

Today, as we say goodbye to 2014, that still remains a powerful message that should resonate with publishers everywhere. On the positive side, the last 12 months have witnessed much progress in the ability of editors and publishers to embrace digital first strategies and to engage in digital product development.
 

Much remains to be done. Now, as we look at 2015 just around the corner, what are some of the areas that I think will take center stage for us in the media.

If I have to think of an omniscient narrator standing on the side of the stage, it would be Mr. Disruption.  We will continue to see the impact (good in most cases) that disruption can bring.

Key for 2015 in the media

1. Monetizing efforts will dominate as publishers and editors gather around their conference rooms to map out their new year strategies.

2. This will include giving greater importance to native/integrated advertising (not just for major metropolitan dailies owned by mega media groups, but for regional newspapers as well). In addition, pay for content strategies will become more prevalent, with publishers creating different ways to monetize via subscriptions and pay options. The search for new sources of revenue will accelerate.

I can also imagine that the pay as you go, piecemeal a la iTunes model will get greater consideration from publishers.

3. As mobile devices become more vital, so will video, which I think will be a protagonist as part of storytelling processes in 2015.
the search for new sources of revenue accelerates.

Then there is the push towards an iTunes model. As with music and video on demand, I believe that news content successfully will be sold on a piecemeal basis.  Two of the world’s most noted newspaper companies – The New York Times and Axel Springer (of Germany) – are hoping that this will become a reality.

4. Data visualization will become more mainstream for publishers.

Publishers, and other media companies and advertisers, will become more intelligent in their use of data.  Designers, too, will embrace it for all they do. Readers will become more savvy in their consumption of data.

5. Media companies will realize that they need to take initiatives in the creation of effective and engaging native advertising. Some will follow the lead of The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal to assemble in house teams of creatives to provide services to advertising clients.

6. Newsrooms will form teams that include the storytellers (journalists), technical types, advertising/marketing folks as the winning trio of expertise that should guide every step of a modern media organization.

Of related interest

2015 will be the year of the reader

http://www.niemanlab.org/2014/12/the-year-of-the-reader/?utm_source=API%27s+Need+to+Know+newsletter&utm_campaign=5e2de58a39-Need_to_Know_December_16_201412_16_2014&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_e3bf78af04-5e2de58a39-31701869

Happy New Year

Taking this opportunity to wish all of TheMarioBlog readers and friends a wonderful and Merry Christmas, and a happy new year, with health, love and prosperity.

I thank you kindly for visiting with me here daily during the year and sharing your thoughts and ideas with me.

Look forward to continuing this journey after the holidays.

Until then, cheers to all, and may our new media year be the best ever.

TheMarioBlog post #1642
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