As Advertising Plummets In Q2, NYT's Total Digital Revenue Exceeds Print

As Advertising Plummets In Q2, NYT's Total Digital Revenue Exceeds Print

The pandemic has made The New York Times even less reliant on advertising than it was before. The New York Times added a record 669,000 digital subscriptions in the second quarter as people sought news about the coronavirus pandemic and followed coverage of the protests after the killing of George Floyd. The 8.4% increase in revenue from subscriptions coupled with a 55% decline in the Times’ print advertising business helped the Gray Lady reach an inflection point: The balance of NYT’s revenue is now majority digital for the first time in its history. Although digital advertising declined less than print, it still fell 32% to $39.5 million – a softer decline than the company had predicted last quarter. The Times’ total subscriber count stands at 6.5 million, more than halfway toward outgoing CEO Mark Thompson’s goal of 10 million subscribers by 2025. For the Times, subscriptions account for nearly three-quarters of overall revenue and brought in $293.2 million during the quarter. Keep your eye on those numbers. Although Meredith Kopit Levien, who will assume the role of CEO on Sept. 8, comes from an ad background, she told investors that the Times’ advertising business is unlikely to be a significant growth driver in the near term. Its display business will be under pressure for the foreseeable. In this environment, the Times’ advertising strategy will focus on making a bigger impact with fewer ads. Visually, the Times will sell fewer ads but with larger formats, she said, and use its ...
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