Already in a weakened state, the press is now fighting a two front war against both technology and Trump. They won't make it to 2020.— Mike Cernovich 🇺🇸 (@Cernovich) December 9, 2016
The situation is dim.
Customers are leaving. Yes, the New York Times has said it added millions of subscribers upon the election of President Trump. That makes no sense. Why did the people opposed to President Trump not subscribe to the New York Times before then?
- The media's credibility at an all-time low.
- Americans elected the presidential candidate the media almost universally hated.
- Technology is making the media obsolete.
And by customers, I mean advertisers. From (ironically) the New York Times:
Across the country, those working in the newspaper industry are fretting as the end of the year approaches. Driving much of the anxiety is a steep drop in print ad revenue, once the lifeblood for newspapers. Spending on newspaper advertising in the United States is projected to fall 11 percent this year, to about $12.5 billion, according to the Interpublic Group’s Magna.No end is in sight.
The media is pushing the federal government to regulate the news, which would create a barrier to competition to protect existing news outlets. The false meme of Fake News is an effort to protect the existing media, which routinely broadcast and publish fake news to push a socialist agenda.
Rather than improve their product, which would take a little work, the news media demand a ban on Breitbart News and the Drudge Report.
Even if Breitbart and Drudge disappeared, the problem would not. People will not return until the product improves.
Here is how to improve the product. I apply an article from Entrepreneur magazine.
1. Assess strengths and weaknesses. The strength of the news media is a history interwoven with the success of post-Civil War America. From newspapers to radio to three-channel TV, the media built a reputable and trusted industry.
The weakness is that it tarnished that reputation by toeing the Democratic Party line from Reagan forward. Many people forget, the media actually held Jimmy Carter accountable.
2. Re-evaluate the target market. The news media keeps targeting upscale adults 18-29 when most of their audience is over-50 and middle class. Only Fox News seems to get who their customers are.
3. Determine how customers benefit. Telling Trump supporters day after day that they are nothing but a dying breed of white nationalists is not a positive experience for them. Work on that.
4. Craft a compelling story. The media has some explaining to do. Everyone knows they were rooting for Hillary. Everyone. More than half the people who bothered to vote did not vote for her. Pointing out the same is true for Trump does not erase the fact that the media backed the wrong pony and must explain what it intends to do about it.
5. Secure customer testimonials. I don't know of anyone on the Trump who is really satisfied with the media's campaign coverage, but if they can find someone, show him. More likely, emphasizing the non-political coverage would be a good thing about now. Roll out the coupons: Save $200 shopping with coupons in this week's Dacron Republican-Democrat.
6. Get employees on board. I really wonder if the conservative press room employees appreciated the Dallas Morning News or the Houston Chronicle for abandoning the conservative candidate this year. Need to reassure them this won't happen again.
7. Build a content factory. Customers are not dumb. They can get local weather and local sports scores quicker and easier on the Internet. Media no longer has a lock on this and must offer the basics in a more compelling manner.
8. Communicate widely. Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook and Amazon have changed the buying experience.
And here is where newspapers, wire services, and other news outlets get in trouble. They have everyone on Twitter with no controls. When a reporter expresses an opinion online that reporter speaks for the news organization. Management needs to crack down. No tweets or Facebook posts by anyone (including the publisher) without being run by an editor first. Not even happy birthday, grandma. This is about survival, folks.
Wouldn't print it, don't tweet it.
Wouldn't print it, don't tweet it.
9. Be consistent. Every day must be a battle to treat all sides to the stories fairly and evenly. The battle to regain their reputation does not end in 2017 or 2018, but follows the news media for the rest of its days.
10. Believe in the business. Optimism works! I worked with a person who viewed her job in the newsroom as feeding the daily beast. Such misery. And of course she did a terrible job. As Carole King sang:
You've got to get up every morning
With a smile in your face
And show the world all the love in your heart
The people gonna treat you better
You're gonna find, yes you will
That you're beautiful as you feel
I do not know into which category this fits, but dump the pundits. Maybe category No. 7. Oh no not all of them. Keep the ones who have good cheer and never take themselves too seriously. And yes, cable news has to fill those hours with something other than Time-Life Records infomercials. But really, there are too many of them. Give the reporters more airtime, George Will less.
The one change I would make if I were dumb enough to own a newspaper would be to hire businessmen for executive positions instead of hiring within the newsroom. The latter is cheaper but you get what you pay for, and the train wrecks keep a-coming.