In recent years news publishers have grappled with an uncomfortable realization: The traditional revenue streams of display advertising and reader subscriptions may not be sufficient to support them in a digital age. Digital display ads command unimpressive rates and engagement, with clickthroughs measured in the tenths of percentage points. Digital subscriptions have recently helped some […]
Jeff Sonderman (Page 7)
Jeff Sonderman is the deputy director of the American Press Institute, helping to lead its use of research, tools, events, and strategic insights to advance and sustain journalism.
He is the architect and developer of API's Metrics for News analytics software that reinvents how publishers use data to inform content strategy. He also edits API's Need to Know newsletter, a uniquely designed resource for spreading fresh, useful insights across the industry, and designed API's Strategy Studies research format for in-depth strategic guidance. Other specific areas of his professional focus include mobile technology, social media, news business models, audience research and content strategies.
He also teaches digital journalism at Georgetown University. Before joining the American Press Institute in 2013, he was the digital media fellow of The Poynter Institute. His earlier journalism background includes digital news — helping to launch TBD.com, a local digital news startup in Washington, D.C. — and various roles in newspapers, as an award-winning reporter, online editor and metro editor of The Times-Tribune in Scranton, Pa.
He graduated from the Missouri School of Journalism and resides in Falls Church, Va., with his wife and daughter.
The potential for native advertising is enormous. For some publishers it’s already more than just potential — BuzzFeed draws all of its revenue from the model; and more than 50 percent of the Atlantic’s digital revenue is tied to native campaigns. From the conversations at our summit we identified a few underlying reasons. 1. It […]
Sponsored content / native advertising appears in many ways. There is no single form, but rather a continuum from banner ads to social media content to large microsites with articles and videos. The fragmented, inconsistent approaches are actually a feature, not a bug — “native” advertising is native to the specific publication or platform it […]
There are four distinct models that we’ve seen so far, each with varying levels of involvement from the publisher and brand: Underwriting model: The brand sponsors content attached to normal reporting, or something that the publisher was creating anyway. This model preserves the most editorial independence. The brand is simply paying to have its name […]
The resounding consensus we heard from summit participants was that upholding the publisher’s own brand and integrity, and thereby its readers trust, is an important principle. These brands seeking sponsored content partners are coming to publishers not only for their audience size but for their trust and integrity, says Rebecca Davis of Ogilvy. The brands […]
As we noted in our discussion of the four business models for sponsored content, there are varying levels of involvement from the brand and the publisher. In some cases the brand is on its own to produce what it wants to publish. But in many cases someone working for the publisher plays a role. Most […]
Most publishers at our summit said they track all the typical content metrics when measuring the reach of sponsored content — views, unique visitors, time spent, etc. Most also share these metrics with sponsors but guarantee little or no specific results. Publishers that maintain more control over the content seemed to feel more comfortable guaranteeing […]
Even the best experts we gathered for our summit acknowledged some areas where knowledge is missing. Reader impact: For one, it’s difficult to know what readers’ tolerance for and reaction to sponsored content is. For all the talk on many sides about whether credibility is affected, no one knows for sure. More research is needed. […]
We asked participants in our Thought Leader Summit on sponsored content to give us some specific information via a survey. Here were their responses: Publishers using sponsored content Forbes Mark Howard, chief revenue officer: Q: What does your organization offer in terms of sponsored content / native advertising / content marketing? What is the content […]
Related reading We recommend the following resources and articles that were based on or closely related to our sponsored content summit discussion. Defining and mapping the native advertising landscape This report by Altimeter analyst Rebecca Lieb, one of our summit participants, is an efficient and insightful summary of what native advertising is, who the stakeholders […]