Ads aren’t the only model

by Jason Preston on July 8, 2009

Romenesko links to the WSJ today, citing a paragraph where John Malone, chairman of Liberty Media, said he couldn’t figure out how Twitter would make money because there’s no ad model for it:

Malone said he didn’t think that an advertising model made sense on Twitter, but there was some hope for a subscription model. “Sooner or later people will be willing to pay for these services,” he said.

Of course, ads and subscriptions aren’t the only models available for online services. Companies like Twitter produce an incredible amount of valuable data that could be sold to third parties.

The thing about ads is that they’re kind of a cop-out, because you don’t actually have to sell your “core” product to an audience, you just have to sell that attention to an advertiser (which is often easy to do; advertisers are looking to buy attention, you just have to meet the right price point).

It’s a great arrangement when the price point is high. But now it might be time for newspapers to develop a product and sell it the old fashioned way.

And don’t worry about Twitter, they’ll be fine 😉


1 Emily Sussman 07.08.09 at 8:40 pm

Ugh. When will these old media types retire already? 😉

BTW I Love. Your. Blog. Thanks!

2 Jason Preston 07.09.09 at 10:32 am

Heh, thanks.

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