Paywall Model Make-or-Break for Variety

Audience loyalty critical as online competitors gain ground
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 10, 2009 2:50 PM CST
Paywall Model Make-or-Break for Variety
The Daily Variety trade magazine is seen for sale at a news stand in the Hollywood section of Los Angeles on Thursday, Sep. 17, 2009.   (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)

Variety will phase in a paywall starting today, a return to its pre-2006 model and a big gamble that its long history as the Hollywood daily will spur users to open their wallets. The site's traffic has increased since it became free, but it failed to attract a bump in advertising revenue, writes Jon Friedman. "We're not as concerned about traffic as other publications," said president Neil Stiles. "As long as we deliver to core people in the business, that's what our advertisers expect."

But online competitors, such as TheWrap.com, have been beating Variety to stories, notes Friedman, writing for MarketWatch. With aggressive newcomers offering scoops at no charge, the old-timer must prove its worth. "Variety needs to upgrade its reputation," Friedman warns. "It must demonstrate, too, that it continues to be relevant—at any price."
(Read more paid content stories.)

We use cookies. By Clicking "OK" or any content on this site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. Read more in our privacy policy.
Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
X
Install the Newser News app
in two easy steps:
1. Tap in your navigation bar.
2. Tap to Add to Home Screen.

X