According to an API report, publishers are increasingly experimenting with merchandise to build their brand, boost engagement and increase subscriptions.
Along with being an unexpected source of revenue for publishers to support journalism, merchandise strategies were also found to be highly effective in creating audience engagement. As a result, certain publishers are selling merchandise linked to popular news stories. By doing so, publishers have managed to use their content to inform merchandise ideas.
Alabama Media Group’s VP of Audience, Elizabeth Hoekenga Whitmire said, “We often look back at top-performing content for merchandise inspiration.” Whitmire added that the sale of merchandise creates engagement around the original story that inspired it.
Other publishers, like The Keene Sentinel, are partnering with local businesses and bundling locally produced goods with their subscription offers. Such programmes are win-win situations for both publishers and retailers, with the former boosting subscriptions and the latter receiving print and digital promotion, apart from payment for their products.
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