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The Market Herald responds to the Facebook news announcement and likely positive impact on audience, revenues and market share
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  • Facebook Australia has restricted Australian news publishers from posting or sharing news content on its platforms in response to proposed Australian legislation
  • Australian legacy publishers receive five free visits a year from Facebook, an estimated $0.4 billion per annum in value and up to 55 per cent of some publisher visits are from Facebook
  • The Market Herald and its Australian platforms receive over 0.5 billion visits a year from its own platforms — and unlike its peers does not rely on Facebook for traffic or ratings
  • Legacy publishers will be severely impacted by this decision, however The Market Herald will not, and its first-party audience strategy could lead to increased audience and revenue

ASX Announcement

The Market Herald Limited (ASX:TMH, “The Market Herald”) is pleased to provide an update on the Facebook Australia restrictions on Australian news publishers announced today and the potential positive impact it will have on The Market Herald, its audience, market share and revenues.

Media is being disrupted by social platforms, legacy publishers are at risk, new digital models will win

The announcement made today by Facebook Australia of their decision to restrict news from being published on their platform is likely to have a significant effect on media in Australia. Media is increasingly being transformed by digital, with no part of media impacted as much as news. 

Part of the digital change effecting news is the presence of online and social platforms such as Facebook which provide news, targeting users and generating revenue from that digital audience.

The recent ACCC Digital Platforms Inquiry (the Inquiry) has looked into the actions of social platforms and their relationship with traditional publishers of news, and found that legacy  publishers rely heavily on platforms such as Facebook to drive their digital audience. 

Submissions by publishers to the Inquiry suggest some publishers estimate that up to 55 per cent1 of their traffic is derived from Facebook. Facebook in its recent regulatory submissions to the Inquiry claims to send over five billion visits a year for free to legacy publishers worth over $400 million in value to publishers who rely on Facebook for traffic2.

The Market Herald does not rely on Facebook for audience and unlike many of its legacy peers will be a net beneficiary from the Facebook ban

The Market Herald has always pursued a first party audience strategy, meaning it receives virtually no traffic from Facebook.

This means unlike its legacy peers The Market Herald is not impacted by the proposed Facebook ban, and is likely to be a net beneficiary from the lobbying of its peers for three reasons:

  • First, no reduction of audience: By relying on its own platforms to generate news, The Market Herald will not see a reduction in audience and reach. Traditional media receive significant audience visits from Facebook. The Market Herald and others that have built digital first models will maintain their audiences and are likely to increase their share of available digital revenues.
  • Second, de-platformed strategy in place: The Market Herald has built technology and workflows in anticipation of a de-platformed media world. Traditional media who have relied on Facebook for traffic will need to invest to re-build these lost audiences, and this will need hard to find people, un-budgeted investment and complex technology roll out.
  • Third, opportunity for new social classified products: The Market Herald is developing new revenue models and offers for the next generation of social platform business and finance audiences. Our relationship with the social platforms is different to the adversarial relationship of legacy peers, and we will be announcing the first social classified offer in the coming months.

Jag Sanger, Managing Director of The Market Herald commented: 

“The decision taken by Facebook Australia to restrict legacy news publishers from distributing on their platform is likely to have a profound effect on the Australian media landscape including significantly impacting revenue generation under traditional media models. The Market Herald has anticipated the impending change to advertising through de-platforming and has always pursued a first party audience strategy. We believe this validates our strategy of journalism led audience building, and not relying on the global social platforms for distribution.”

1https://www.accc.gov.au/system/files/oOh%21media%20%28April%202018%29.pdf

2https://about.fb.com/news/2021/02/changes-to-sharing-and-viewing-news-on-facebook-in-australia

About The Market Herald

The Market Herald is a multi-platform business and finance news organisation building the world’s largest audience of active investors, and the most valuable audience of affluent luxury and wealth buyers. Every month The Market Herald and its global financial communities deliver over 100 million page impressions reaching over 2.5 million investors with investable assets of over $300 billion. By leveraging our unique analytics and data led way to create and deliver business stories we are able to capture insights into investor thinking, giving us a distinct advantage to compete and win in a $4 billion revenue market serving active investors. 

Investor and media enquiries
Jag Sanger
Managing Director
The Market Herald
[email protected]

This announcement has been authorised for release by the board of The Market Herald.

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