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Diversifying revenue streams has evolved from a forethought into a complete necessity for publishers who want to successfully monetize in the age of social. From header bidding to Facebook Instant Articles and monetization on social, publishers are now turning to subscription models to convert readers into loyal, lasting users. Last year, the pivot to paywalls gained unprecedented traction. By the end of 2017, The New York Times had over 3.5 million digital and print subscriptions. Fast forward to today and you'll find that other big-name publishers — like CNN, The Atlantic, and Wired — have followed suit, looking to online paywalls and subscription-based models to alleviate their financial woes.
It's no surprise as to why they're doing this either. The duopoly that is Facebook and Google continues to dominate digital ad revenue. Not helping matters, Facebook recently dropped their major algorithm bomb that left publishers of every size scrambling. The subscription-based business model has suddenly become a safe bet.