Morning Advertiser update

The MA's digital future

By Chris Lowe, Morning Advertiser Publisher

- Last updated on GMT

Future: The MA will focus on its growing online audience as well as F2F events
Future: The MA will focus on its growing online audience as well as F2F events

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All of us have had to adapt our personal and business lives in ways we have never experienced before – and in its 226 years, The MA has lived through two world wars, several financial collapses and various revolutions.

The pandemic has meant change. For media and specifically The MA​ it has meant an acceleration of our plans to move to a more digital-focused world.

Our website traffic has now grown to 423,000 people in May, 486,000 people in June and 1.2 million since lockdown.

As we reacted to the pandemic, we moved fully online, redoubling our efforts on digital to help you through this terrible time by providing timely updates on the situation as it developed.

We, alone in the media pub and bar sector, made a conscious decision not to mothball our operations, but instead got down in the trenches alongside you to bring you the vital information  needed at this time of crisis.

We are aware not everyone made it through this crisis with their business intact, but we aimed to do what we could for as many as possible whilst trying to protect our own employees.

Printing our magazine

We took the decision to stop printing our magazine in May to focus all our resource on creating content that will be accessible for all.

Print, as a tangible product, must travel through lots of hands and many of our readers were no longer in their place of work.

It is also a medium which fewer people are choosing to read as a preference. Modern consumers are now spending 61% of their reading time consuming content online, compared to just 6% of it with a printed product, so it would be foolish of us to ignore this and not embrace that change.

We are conscious that our website reaches 12 times more people than our magazine did, and we are investing significantly into our digital platforms to deliver best-in-class digital content.

We are also aiming for a more personalised online journey to reflect the diversity of our business readers.

The June issue of the magazine was our last, at least in its current guise. But this is allowing us to focus on a website that represents and delivers something for everyone across the entire pub and bar sector.

Significant investment

Our significant platform investment is enabling our journalists to deliver news, features, podcasts and videos at the most crucial of times, helping you build a brighter future.

Meanwhile, in any moment of crisis, good businesses innovate, and as we faced a suspension in face-to-face events, we’ve adapted and evolved to find new ways to deliver our content to each community.

We are committed during this pandemic to continue in our delivery of these ‘virtually’, wherever possible, to shine a positive spotlight on this sector, unearthing new talents and delivering inspirational stories.

The Great British Pub Awards is one such event. We have been deeply moved hearing the tales of pubs that supported their communities supplying food and shelter to those shielding, helping individuals living alone to stay in touch and providing much needed community support. We are aiming to shine a spotlight on these stories and the sector to the Great British public in the coming months.  

Finally, we would like to thank all of you for your unwavering support, and a special thanks to those who have helped us shape our new direction and we look forward to your continued support in the future.

We are committed to doing our very best to serve the pub and bar sector, pointing the brand in a direction that will see it last another 226 years and we hope all of you will continue to share the journey.

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