Study highlights profitability concerns for digital media in Latin America

Over the last decade, digital media has grown worldwide, and Latin America is no exception. Unfortunately,despite the presence of many creative and innovate projects, the global tendency towards reduced revenue for media companies continues to affect digital outlets, says a study organized by the New Ibero-American Journalism Foundation (FNPI), whose founder is Colombian Nobel prize winner Gabriel García Márquez.

The report, “Survey of trends in digital journalism ventures in Latin America,” shows that 20% of digital initiatives by newspapers don’t generate profits, said FNPI Interactive Media editor Carlos Serrano at the report’s launch at the 12th Digital Journalism Congress in Huesca, Spain.

This is the same problem that major media outlets like The New York Times and The Dallas Morning have faced and are trying to answer by implementing different types of paywalls.

The study, financed by the Andean Development Corporation (CAF) and FNPI, analyzed 54 media outlets and found that the majority (57%) did not do any viability study before launching their digital projects, EFE explains.

Other problems highlighted in the study include difficulties selling advertising on digital media products and the underutilization of mobile platforms and social networks as tools to increase traffic and engagement.

Note from the editor: This story was originally published by the Knight Center’s blog Journalism in the Americas, the predecessor of LatAm Journalism Review.