Even as global readership rate increase across the digital news sector, UK publishers are struggling to adapt to the industry’s shift from print to online media: PwC’s latest Entertainment and Media report covering 2013-2017 projects that the UK’s B2B publishers, newspapers, and consumer magazines will see a net fall in revenues over the next four years.
Key to the problem is the fact that publishers are still struggling to make the most of their advertising arms. With 22% of UK adults now using ad blocking software, revenue losses from ad blocking are expected to reach £1.3 billion in the U.K. by 2020. As a result, native content is proving to be a smarter way for publishers to replace print ad revenue than banner ads and popups.
But charging premium rates for native content is a challenge: native ads (articles, videos, infographics, or other content items created or co-created by advertisers) only deliver value to advertisers if publishers can prove they drive substantive readership, clicks, or conversions. Driving that value requires publishers to use smarter targeted engagement strategies to reach a greater proportion of their visitors to drive them towards native content. To increase ad revenue in 2016 and beyond, digital publishers can deploy new tactics to engage and monetise their visitors.