Digital media’s money making methods // week 9

As dead tree editions dwindle and we move into the era of digital news, the question arises as to how native digital news organisations make money ? In order to create quality content an organisation needs money.


In a QUT online journalism lecture, Queensland University of Technology tutor Graham Cairns said more than half of the visits to a website are driven by social media. The good news is this indicates the public’s appetite for news still remains. The bad news is people often go to the article, then go straight back to Facebook, for example, and do not read any other articles on that news website. Thus spending less time on the site. In August 2016 Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said Facebook was a delivery platform not a news source. “We are a tech company, not a media company,” he said. “We build the tools, we do not produce any content.” This is a problem when considering the way in which digital news organisations make money.

Advertisements are the most common form of revenue for legacy media’s websites. News organisations such as, Brisbane Times and The Guardian all run ad-supported websites. Third parties pay the organisations for each click made by readers on their advertisements. An issue for ad-supported websites are ad-blockers. People who use ad-blocking software on their search engines limit the potential clicks and thus the revenue for news organisations.

wek 9.png
Source: Twitter
Using ad blocking software is regarded as stealing by some. Article available here explains this opinion and why ad blockers are so harmful to online publishers.

Some news organisations provide subscription services in addition to or instead of advertisements displayed on their websites. The Courier Mail provides a majority of their articles free to readers, while selected articles are classified as ‘premium’and only subscribers may access them. The Australian Financial Review is predominately a subscription service with readers being blocked from articles after three free views.

There has been recent discussion over whether The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald will only put out ‘dead tree’ editions on the weekends and publish online-only content during weekdays. the reason for this proposal is because weekend newspapers are still genuinely read due to, for example, the classifieds and travel sections which are specifically contained in weekend editions.

“There is not going to be one business model to replace the one the Internet broke,” said Jay Rosen.

Sponsored Instagram posts // week 5

I, along with almost every other millennial, am a self-confessed social media addict.

giphy (3).gif

Snapchat, Instagram, YouTube, Facebook, you name it and I’ll have an account.  I’m not lying when I say my morning Snapchat routine takes me about 30 minutes to watch every persons “snapstory”. I can literally spend hours upon hours on the internet searching, scrolling and stalking. As much as this pains my parents, social media has evidently transformed our world.

Social media is no longer a fun hobby to pass the time, for some it’s a career. Take social media influencers for example. Companies are now paying these influencers big bucks to promote products via their social media accounts.

Source: Twitter


The video below gives you a look into what Eugenie Grey’s job entails as an Instagram influencer. Eugenie has now accumulated 461,000* Instagram followers, gaining 249,000 followers since the video was published on Buzzfeed in January 2015.

Another example of an influencer is fashion and interior design blogger Aimee Song who has accumulated 3.8 million* followers on her Instagram, Song of Style. According to an article by Gazette Review, Aimee charges up to $50,000 for a single Instagram post.

Blogger Aimee Song has accumulated 3.8 million Instagram followers. Photo credit:

Celebrities are also getting in on the action as followers equal money. Model and actress Cara Delevingne earns $150,000 for each sponsored post she publishes to her 33 million* followers according to Gazette Review. Fellow model Kendall Jenner reportedly earns up to $300,000 for a sponsored post to her 64 million* Instagram followers according to The Mirror UK.

Models Cara Delevingne (left) and Kendall Jenner (right) are paid between $150,000 and $300,000 to promote products via their social media. Photo credit:

While sponsored posts benefit celebrities and influencers, Instagram users seem to be annoyed by the constant sponsored posts showing up on their feeds.

wk 5 pt 3.png
Source: Twitter 
wk 5.png
Source: Twitter


Despite the backlash, if any companies need me to promote their products on an admittedly sub-par but well loved Instagram account, hit me up yeah?

giphy (4).gif

*All figures accurate as at time of article.