Traffic Magazine

Traffic Magazine Data + Media + Money

One reason the future doesn’t look so bright for many media companies is they stopped inventing it. Traffic Editor Patri...
05/22/2018

One reason the future doesn’t look so bright for many media companies is they stopped inventing it. Traffic Editor Patrick Appel explains how content companies are falling behind in the innovation game, with insights from PwC's Kristina Bennin: https://hubs.ly/H0cbHDv0

It doesn’t take a math whiz to see that the slice of viewership today’s TV shows reach is shrinking faster than the over...
05/16/2018

It doesn’t take a math whiz to see that the slice of viewership today’s TV shows reach is shrinking faster than the overall pie is growing. In our latest story, Patrick Appel speaks to author Derek Thompson about the fracturing of our attention and the redefinition of the mass-market. https://hubs.ly/H0c62cf0

In our latest article, pricing expert Frank Luby tells us why The New Yorker should charge a club membership, whether Hu...
04/12/2018

In our latest article, pricing expert Frank Luby tells us why The New Yorker should charge a club membership, whether Hulu is getting desperate, and why he can’t eat at KFC: https://hubs.ly/H0bF4Mt0

“Physical retail is a self-constraining model. If we can open people’s eyes to the incredible content, and the incredibl...
02/28/2018

“Physical retail is a self-constraining model. If we can open people’s eyes to the incredible content, and the incredible amount of content, it could become a virtuous circle where more sales lead to more diverse material and more diverse material leads to more sales.” Read our interview with David Steinberger of ComiXology here: https://hubs.ly/H0b72GB0

The average number of TV channels U.S. households watch remained at roughly 18 over the past three years; the number of ...
02/12/2018

The average number of TV channels U.S. households watch remained at roughly 18 over the past three years; the number of unique artists listened to on Spotify per week increased from the high-20s to the low-40s; and the number of apps used per month merely ticked from 27 to 28. The inherent difficulty in breaking into a consumer’s media diet makes sophisticated marketing critical when launching any new digital product — even for a strong brand like Disney. Read the rest in Traffic Magazine: https://hubs.ly/H09ZlPB0

Disney may have the content consumers want, but it will also need to package it — with or without programming from other...
02/09/2018

Disney may have the content consumers want, but it will also need to package it — with or without programming from other companies — in a manner and at a price that’s attractive. With consumer behavior changing rapidly, doing so will be both more challenging and, potentially, more lucrative. Get more insights like this in our newest article: https://hubs.ly/H09YB_10

01/23/2018

“We think our experience will set the benchmark for the watch industry at large, and potentially for the whole luxury industry at large.” Read our feature with Benjamin Clymer of HODINKEE here:

Have you seen our latest edition? It features a fascinating article on AI in the media business. Read it online here: ht...
01/12/2018
How to Survive the Robot Takeover

Have you seen our latest edition? It features a fascinating article on AI in the media business. Read it online here: https://hubs.ly/H09G73k0

I’d called Norman to discuss the recent backlash against the digital revolution, fueled by everything from social-media filter bubbles and Russian election hacking to dark predictions that artificial intelligence could destroy the world. In addition to writing influential books, including “The D...

The AP has been using AI to churn out business coverage of financial earnings, as well as some sports stories. Six month...
01/11/2018
How to Survive the Robot Takeover

The AP has been using AI to churn out business coverage of financial earnings, as well as some sports stories. Six months after the project’s launch, the output of these stories has increased twelve-fold (from 300 companies covered to 4000), according to media strategist Francesco Marconi. Read more insights like this in our latest feature: https://hubs.ly/H09FDcr0

I’d called Norman to discuss the recent backlash against the digital revolution, fueled by everything from social-media filter bubbles and Russian election hacking to dark predictions that artificial intelligence could destroy the world. In addition to writing influential books, including “The D...

Today we published our extraordinary feature on the fusion of skills necessary for media companies to succeed in the dig...
01/10/2018
How to Survive the Robot Takeover

Today we published our extraordinary feature on the fusion of skills necessary for media companies to succeed in the digital age — which focuses largely on the Washington Post's reinvention. Read it here: https://hubs.ly/H09F7Mk0

I’d called Norman to discuss the recent backlash against the digital revolution, fueled by everything from social-media filter bubbles and Russian election hacking to dark predictions that artificial intelligence could destroy the world. In addition to writing influential books, including “The D...

The top paywalls convert at a rate more than 95 times that of the lowest-performing ones. Over four months, publishers u...
12/20/2017
The 7 Percent Rule

The top paywalls convert at a rate more than 95 times that of the lowest-performing ones. Over four months, publishers usually convert between 1 and 2 percent of unique visitors who’ve seen a subscription offer — but well-designed offers can convert in the 3 to 8 percent range. Hear more insights like this in our new edition: https://hubs.ly/H09vLzR0

“Hmmm……interesting,” came the initial responses, usually followed by silence. Only Raju Narisetti, then managing editor at the Washington Post, knew offhand. “A surprisingly low number,” he responded quickly with a smile. “About eight.” These days, Narisetti, now CEO of Gizmodo Media...

“Most publishers have advertising data in one place. Reader data in another place. Content data in another place. But we...
12/19/2017
The 7 Percent Rule

“Most publishers have advertising data in one place. Reader data in another place. Content data in another place. But we invested in technology that allows it to track all of this information together, in a concerted effort to understand the whole customer experience.” Laura Evans, senior vice president of data and insights at the The New York Times. Get more insights in our latest edition: https://hubs.ly/H09v5l_0

“Hmmm……interesting,” came the initial responses, usually followed by silence. Only Raju Narisetti, then managing editor at the Washington Post, knew offhand. “A surprisingly low number,” he responded quickly with a smile. “About eight.” These days, Narisetti, now CEO of Gizmodo Media...

“Nearly a decade ago, I began asking media executives what I assumed would be a simple question: ‘What percentage of you...
12/18/2017
The 7 Percent Rule

“Nearly a decade ago, I began asking media executives what I assumed would be a simple question: ‘What percentage of your visitors drive 50 percent of your site’s traffic?’” Read Ken Doctor’s findings in our latest edition: https://hubs.ly/H09tH_z0

“Hmmm……interesting,” came the initial responses, usually followed by silence. Only Raju Narisetti, then managing editor at the Washington Post, knew offhand. “A surprisingly low number,” he responded quickly with a smile. “About eight.” These days, Narisetti, now CEO of Gizmodo Media...

“Membership means that I can go to this club, I can hang with this crowd. If I were designing a paid product, I would th...
12/14/2017
Putting the Tech in TechCrunch

“Membership means that I can go to this club, I can hang with this crowd. If I were designing a paid product, I would think of building for members instead of building for subscribers.” Get the new edition of Traffic and read the interview with Nicole Wilke of TechCrunch here: https://hubs.ly/H09snZ60

At TechCrunch’s San Francisco offices, Wilke talked with Piano CEO and Traffic publisher Trevor Kaufman about how her early interest in technology — being the kind of kid who begged her dad to buy her books like “Teach Yourself PERL in 24 Hours” — led to a career working on product at Disn...

People, especially younger ones, have become increasingly inured to advertising; online, they’re actively irritated with...
12/13/2017
Get a copy

People, especially younger ones, have become increasingly inured to advertising; online, they’re actively irritated with it. Branded content can stand out from the clutter and, done right, provide a positive experience. Read Jesse Oxfeld's full article in Traffic: https://hubs.ly/H09rLZn0

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John Meada is looking to create products that address the technological needs of communities far from the suburbs of Sil...
12/12/2017

John Meada is looking to create products that address the technological needs of communities far from the suburbs of Silicon Valley — and he’s bringing Automattic’s design and development teams with him. Read Traffic Magazine’s interview here: https://hubs.ly/H09r6k-0

The Information posts two stories every day. 10K+ subscribers pay $399 a year to read them. In the latest volume of Traf...
12/12/2017

The Information posts two stories every day. 10K+ subscribers pay $399 a year to read them. In the latest volume of Traffic, Jessica Lessin, Editor-in-Chief, explains how she turned her Silicon Valley news site into a cash-flow-positive scoop powerhouse. Read it here: https://hubs.ly/H09qXK10

Traffic Magazine's cover photo
12/11/2017

Traffic Magazine's cover photo

04/03/2017
Piano.io

Piano.io

"For the fourth quarter in a row, Piano is celebrating record revenue growth and accelerating adoption of its unique content monetization platform. Among other functions, Piano’s vertically integrated software suite evaluates and segments digital audiences, tests and deploys targeted offers, and helps convert loyal users into registered and paying subscribers."

The past twenty years of digital media in one graphic.
10/03/2016
Welcome to the Web

The past twenty years of digital media in one graphic.

  Whether working as an art director at a small magazine or a design director at a giant media company, I’ve spent most of my career navigating the space between design and programming. That has given me a front-row seat to the changes that created today’s digital media environment. As you can see h...

"Digital luminaries expected the internet to usher in the democratization of media. Instead, the reverse is happening — ...
09/28/2016
The Ever-Expanding Media Giants

"Digital luminaries expected the internet to usher in the democratization of media. Instead, the reverse is happening — the big are getting bigger."

Media makes more money today than at any time in human history — $2.4 trillion worldwide, if you count platform companies such as AT&T as well as content companies like the Walt Disney Co. And that figure is rising fast due to an unprecedented appetite for media products: The U.S. Census Bureau esti...

How Facebook and Google ate the online advertising market.
09/26/2016
The Online Ad Oligarchy

How Facebook and Google ate the online advertising market.

  In online advertising there are Google and Facebook, and… everyone else. The two Silicon Valley juggernauts’ combined digital advertising revenue is now about 24 times that of the of entire U.S. newspaper industry. Sure, the overall online ad pie is growing — up 21 percent last year alone — as dig...

"Even for brands that manage to convince users to download an app, there’s no guarantee it will ever be opened. Forreste...
09/23/2016
Do You Need an App for That?

"Even for brands that manage to convince users to download an app, there’s no guarantee it will ever be opened. Forrester Research Inc. calculates that smartphone owners typically spend 88 percent of their time using just five apps. It’s not the same five apps for everyone, but it’s rare for editorial apps to be among them. “The apps that get usage are the Instagrams, the Twitters, and the things that people impulse-check,” says Aaron Lammer, co-founder of Longform.org, a site that highlights high-quality narrative journalism. “I don’t think people are impulse-checking monthly and quarterly magazines.”"

“Just a little?” Thompson says with a smile when asked if he thinks the media industry’s enthusiasm for apps has cooled. The reason is simple: The golden age of media people thought they would usher in never arrived. The buzzy mobile-first startup Circa, which raised more than $5 million from invest...

Mo Pageviews, Mo Problems
09/23/2016
Mo Pageviews, Mo Problems

Mo Pageviews, Mo Problems

Fat lot of good it did them. In the traditional media business, bigger was better. Ad revenue increased along with circulation. That’s why so many publishers didn’t charge consumers to read their publications online. Most of them saw subscriptions as a way to offset printing costs, not as a primary...

"Whatever happens to Brave, Eich is right about one thing: Ad blocking is growing more popular, and no one has a realist...
09/23/2016
No Ads for You!

"Whatever happens to Brave, Eich is right about one thing: Ad blocking is growing more popular, and no one has a realistic plan to stop it. In fact, some powerful companies arguably have an interest in fueling it — including phone manufacturers like Apple (which began allowing users to install mobile ad-blocking software last year), mobile network operators who want to reduce their data traffic, and anyone else who wants to enter the browser market. Other browser companies might even respond to Brave by promoting their own ad-blocking capabilities. It’s never been easier to build an ad-based business on the internet — or harder to make one last. Just ask the online publishers whose ads Brave plans on replacing."

Now imagine someone told you about another startup, dedicated to “Building a Better Web” by making online ads smaller, faster to download, and more respectful of user privacy. It would help publishers make more money than they currently get from the dirt-cheap “programmatic ads” sold in real-time au...

"Email gives companies a route around the online platforms that have become high-tech middlemen of sorts. An email list ...
09/23/2016
Who’s LOLing Now?

"Email gives companies a route around the online platforms that have become high-tech middlemen of sorts. An email list belongs to a publisher alone — as do the resulting data and revenue. “There’s nothing more measurable and trackable than email,” says Nicco Mele, director of Harvard’s Shorenstein Center and former senior vice president and deputy publisher of the Los Angeles Times, where he developed the publication’s newsletter strategy. 'For media organizations, email is the single most powerful performance-based tool that they have.'"

Dan Oshinsky has the challenging job of reaching BuzzFeed’s young, social-media-obsessed readers with a technology that came into use before many of them were born. In 2012, when he started as the company’s director of newsletters, BuzzFeed had fewer than 20,000 newsletter subscribers, who in total…

The Next Great American Pastime
09/23/2016
The Next Great American Pastime

The Next Great American Pastime

Half of the 10 players are on the American team, named “Liquid.” They’re stalking a five-man team from Brazil called “Luminosity,” which is playing this round as terrorists. The Americans are patrolling the area of the onscreen “map” where the terrorists hope to plant a bomb, represented in the game...

"Why didn’t the machine recognize that problem? Weren’t my many thumbs-downs a clear signal that I wasn’t satisfied? Cou...
09/23/2016
AI Blues

"Why didn’t the machine recognize that problem? Weren’t my many thumbs-downs a clear signal that I wasn’t satisfied? Couldn’t it have put a virtual hand on my shoulder and said, 'You seem unhappy, William. Is something wrong?' It turns out that Pandora’s limited curation options are an intentional part of the system, which aims to keep the feedback 'simple and direct,' as Schmidt put it, so the algorithms do the heavy lifting — which, after all, is the point of AI: make life easier for the humans."

Still, it’s hard to imagine AI making a real emotional connection, touching us as the best media personalities do. Could a robot ever be a great stand-up comedian? Will your favorite TV talk show one day be hosted by an algorithm? Ridiculous, right? Perhaps. But just a few decades ago, it was ridicu...

Maker’s Next Act
09/23/2016
Maker’s Next Act

Maker’s Next Act

“Instead of me looking at the artist on stage, I’d watch the audience,” says Holt, whose intellectual demeanor is accentuated by a substantial beard. “I was trying to figure out: Are they relatives, are they fans, are they friends? Is it a real audience? Is the reaction real?” Over the years, he dev...

How Many Ads to Pay a Writer?
09/23/2016
How Many Ads to Pay a Writer?

How Many Ads to Pay a Writer?

 Amid all the upheaval in the media business, one fact has remained constant: Most companies that sell advertising against content still need to pay people to create it. In most cases, those people are still writers. And one of the most underreported changes in the business in recent years is how ma...

"Just five countries account for 74 percent of online advertising revenue: the United States, China, the United Kingdom,...
09/23/2016
Traffic Magazine

"Just five countries account for 74 percent of online advertising revenue: the United States, China, the United Kingdom, Japan, and Germany. The U.S. leads the pack with 36.8 percent of the world’s online ad dollars, even though it has just 4.4 percent of its population — companies will buy an estimated $213.88 worth of digital advertising for each American this year. At the other extreme, India has more people than online ad dollars — 17.8 percent of the global population, but only half of a percent of its digital ad market."

 Just five countries account for 74 percent of online advertising revenue: the United States, China, the United Kingdom, Japan, and Germany. The U.S. leads the pack with 36.8 percent of the world’s online ad dollars, even though it has just 4.4 percent of its population — companies will buy an estim...

"To put the internet’s scale in perspective, imagine that just 1 percent of web pages have standard 300-by-250-pixel ban...
09/23/2016

"To put the internet’s scale in perspective, imagine that just 1 percent of web pages have standard 300-by-250-pixel banner ads on them. If you printed out all those ads (at 300 dpi) and stuck them on a billboard, it would stretch 9.5 million miles long and reach 7.9 million miles high. The Earth, by contrast, is only 7,926 miles at its widest point. The sun only 864,938 miles across."

http://trafficmagazine.com/2016/09/22/the-biggest-billboard-in-the-universe/

Traffic Magazine's cover photo
09/17/2016

Traffic Magazine's cover photo

Traffic Magazine
09/17/2016

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