Open Report:Bespoke – NYT and Competitors Vol 1

Key Takeaways:

  • News consumption is up a good deal, especially among those who are concerned about coronavirus.

  • A rising tide is lifting all news consumption channels, but blogs and websites are showing the most significant upswings in usage. Social media is prominently mentioned as a key news source for consumers.

  • Around a third of respondents think paid content is better than free articles and have a generally positive outlook toward paying for news content/subscriptions.

  • The New York Times is the most popular publication in our survey, followed by USA Today, Washington Post, and The Wall Street Journal. Consumption frequency is up for all publications, led by the New York Times.

  • Readers of the Financial Times and The Wall Street Journal are the most likely to be paid subscribers. 29.9% of NYT readers say they have a paid subscription.

  • For some publications, concern around coronavirus correlates with being more likely to have a paid subscription. The New York Times is one of them. The more concerned the reader is, the more likely they are to be paying subs. In contrast, readers of the Wall Street Journal show a similar propensity to pay regardless of how concerned they are with coronavirus.

  • Around half of NYT digital only subs who are paying the promotional rate said they are willing to pay the higher, $17 per month, rate after their promo period is up.

  • 84.7% of NYT paid subs said they plan to continue paying after coronavirus is no longer a concern (9.2% said they will cancel, and 6.1% do not know).

  • The Business section is a key driver for paid NYT subscriptions.

  • Free content NYT readers show a reasonably strong willingness to sign up at the current promotional rate of $4 per month. Over 40% said if they run into a paywall when trying to read a NYT article asking them to pay $4 per month they would probably or definitely do it.

Key Charts: