Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Are newspaper brands back? Report from Spain

Rosalia Lloret: People are searching for credible
sources amid an avalanche of information.
Versión en español aquí.

El País is widening its lead as the No. 1 newspaper website in Spain with 7.6 million unique users in June (for comparison, the number is 74 million for the New York Times).

At the same time the newspaper's corporate parent, Prisa, is struggling financially and faced a one-day strike over 200 layoffs at its radio affiliate and employee anger over cuts at its financial daily.

Despite the bad financial news, Prisa's chief digital officer, Rosalía Lloret believes there are signs that El País is strengthening its brand. She made her comments during the recent summer course of la Universidad Complutense de Madrid in El Escorial.

Two-thirds choose the brand

Lloret noted that more than half of the users of El País and its affiliated websites come directly to the site, either by typing in the web address or from a bookmark. That is, they are coming intentionally, not by chance.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

With crisis in Spain, El Pais expands globally

Spain is suffering through a newspaper crisis as severe as that in the U.S., and the response of one of its leading newspapers has been to expand into new markets.

El Pais, part of Grupo Prisa, is cutting editorial staff at its headquarters in Madrid, but it just announced an expansion of its coverage of Mexico and Latin America.  The Mexico section will have its own digital front page and six new staff people based in Mexico City. This follows on El Pais's launching of a digital front page for the U.S. as well. For journalists in Spain -- who have seen 7,000 of their peers laid off in the past three years -- the expansion in the Americas has to be a slap in the face. But it has a a cruel commercial logic.