Publishers’ International Expansion: Good News and Bad News

Publishers, international markets are there for the taking – well, most of them; plus, Time Out and AMI make some big changes

Among all of the challenges facing digital publishers, international expansion is understandably on the back burner, but don’t sleep on the possible new revenue stream. Social media has shown that world markets can shrink and become more manageable, while audience development and engagement aren’t limited by boundaries.

MediaPost’s Publishers Daily touches on this trend in recent articles, both the positive signs for growth as well as some of the drawbacks.

Publishers, International Markets Are a Good Match …

For publishers, international markets represent a golden opportunity, especially for multiplatform luxury brands, according to a column in MediaPost’s Publishers Daily.

“Despite a much more competitive landscape, the best magazine brands still build an incredibly strong connection with their audience that few other media can match. In today’s more fluid media environment, magazines can and should use this extraordinary relationship to create new sources of value for their readers and new revenue streams for their business,” Nick Blunden writes.

“Together, these cross-country, channel and format opportunities ought to unlock enough additional value to enable magazines to reverse the trend towards increasingly commoditized content.”

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… But China Is Cracking Down on Publishers’ International Expansion There

At least one country, though, is making a show of outlawing publishers’ international aspirations, MediaPost’s Publishers Daily reports.

“This month, the Chinese Ministry of Industry and Information Technology and the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television promulgated a new set of regulations which require all entities publishing online to host all of their content on servers located in China. In its present wording, this prohibition would appear to apply to virtually every foreign publisher operating in China, including news, entertainment, and game publishers, as well as any Chinese publisher that has accepted foreign investment,” Erik Sass writes.

Download a FREE copy of 7 Ways to Monetize your Portal Audience, and discover how today's top publishers are generating revenue through memberships, events, clubs, sponsorships, and more.

“While the latter prohibition seems unambiguous, it is unlikely that the government actually intends to give every single foreign publication the boot. Because the rule of law is inconsistent at best in China, authorities can use the new regulations to silence unwelcome opinions, but otherwise, turn a blind eye to foreign ownership when no action is necessary.”

Time Out Refocuses on Ecommerce Content Strategy

Known as a publication that proliferated locally to list events, Time Out is flipping things a bit and hoping to re-emerge as a more dynamic publisher, including an ecommerce content strategy component, MediaPost’s Publishers Daily reports.

“Created by Time Out in collaboration with adam&eveDDB, a creative agency, the redesign includes new City-specific logos and mastheads for all the publisher’s content, including magazines, mobile, social, Web, advertising, and live events,” Sass writes.

“The new look coincides with an updated tag line, ‘Discover/Book/Share,’ highlighting the convenience offered by the brand’s commerce offerings. Users can turn to Time Out for a variety of planning functions, including booking a table, buying tickets, accessing special offers, and reviewing, rating and sharing the experience via social media afterwards.”

AMI Names New Group Publisher

American Media Inc. has named Neil Goldstein Senior Vice President and Group Publisher of the company’s entertainment division, MediaPost’s Publishers Daily reports.

“In a statement, Goldstein said he plans to develop ‘new and exciting opportunities’ and platforms around AMI’s digital assets. AMI chairman and CEO David J. Pecker stated that Goldstein’s successful leadership of Star proved he could head AMI’s entertainment titles,” Sara Guaglione writes.

Publishers: International expansion part of your plans? Let us know in the comments!

To read more about publishers’ international aims and other news, visit MediaPost’s Publishers Daily.

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