December 1, 2023
Members Only

Should Media Companies Go Subscription First?

One of the core theses of A Media Operator is that the vast majority of media companies are going to get smaller. It is something we have written about since the early days of AMO. There is a clear barbell that exists where you are obviously one of the largest publications out there—NYT, DDM, Condé Nast, FT, etc.—or you are a niche operator. Being in the middle—BuzzFeed is the easiest example—is a recipe for disaster.

And so, we are going to see publishers get inherently smaller as time goes on. Teams are going to get much leaner. They will have no choice. The outcome will also be that we have many more publications. I think this is a totally fine future because for each of those publications to survive, they will need to have very clearly defined audiences. For too long, media companies have created content without that clear understanding.

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