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Executive Report - By Thomas Baekdal - October 2016

Publishers and Conversions. It's Why We Do Journalism

Let's have a serious talk about how publishers look at conversions. Many journalists have a very weird idea about conversions. They think it's something to do with the business side of the newspaper, and that it shouldn't have anything to do with the newsroom or the journalists. And, they often define a focus on conversions as a negative and as a threat to their journalistic independence.

But this negativity towards conversions is often a big factor in why media companies fail. Especially today when most media companies are just part of the grey mass of random articles.

The problem is that none of this is true. Conversion is the number one metric for journalistic success. And it's just as important a metric for the newsroom as it is for the business side... if not more.

As I tweeted about a week ago:

And the good thing is that more and more publishers are starting to realize this as well.

Just look at politics. Because of the pressure from populistic political parties, journalist are starting to rediscover the real value of news. And we have seen this more than anywhere else in the US, with newspapers like the Washington Post, BuzzFeed News and now also the New York Times.

All of them have realized that it isn't real journalism to just be the bringers of news. They have rediscovered that fact checking and real investigative reporting is what people actually want. And the result is remarkable.

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What is Baekdal?

Baekdal is a magazine for media professionals, focusing on media analysis, trends, patterns, strategy, journalistic focus, and newsroom optimization. Since 2010, it has helped publishers in more than 40 countries, including big and small publishers like Condé Nast, Bonnier, Schibsted, NRC, and others, as well as companies like Google and Microsoft.

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Thomas Baekdal

Founder, media analyst, author, and publisher. Follow on Twitter

"Thomas Baekdal is one of Scandinavia's most sought-after experts in the digitization of media companies. He has made ​​himself known for his analysis of how digitization has changed the way we consume media."
Swedish business magazine, Resumé


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