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Adapting consumer revenue and events in the time of COVID-19

News organizations are finding ways to pivot their consumer revenue strategies in response to COVID-19, from taking events online to making timely appeals and building connections among audiences and experts. These adaptations of audience engagement and memberful modes of working are ready for application to our new normal.

The Membership Puzzle Project has rounded up steal-worthy operations and revenue adaptations during the COVID-19 crisis in this comprehensive rundown of consumer revenue tactics, transforming in person events into online experiences, convening communities, and inviting experts into the newsroom.

This resource reflects the need for early outcome wins in our new reality.

Each section of the report cites clear takeaways and examples of the tactics in action:

  • “If your newsroom is providing a true service to your community at this moment, there are appropriate ways to ask for support. If you’re not covering the crisis, whether because of staff limitations or because it’s out of scope, it’s probably best to skip your scheduled membership appeal.
  • “Think in hours, not days, when planning schedules for digital events. Don’t go for television-quality standards if you want it to have an approachable, community feel. If you have to choose, focus on audio quality over video quality.”
  • “Find your purpose in this moment by returning to your core mission. Ask yourself and your team what you typically offer that is different from anywhere else, and how that can be adapted for this moment. [And then] Design for now, not sustainability, nor scale.”

  • “Medical professionals have become trusted, direct sources of information…This is a prime opportunity to invite experts to ‘join the beat.’ “

They also note that their study is ongoing. This is a real-time research project, and we’re here to study and share the developing practice of membership in news. Email the MPP team at ideas@membershippuzzle.org if you want to share things that are working or questions you have.