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June 1, 2012, 11:51 a.m.
Reporting & Production

The Wall Street Journal “cannot generate enough video streams” to meet advertising demand

The latest in WSJ Live’s video line-up is an early-morning news, business, and finance show called Asia Today.

The Wall Street Journal announced this morning the launch of a new early-morning show, Asia Today, which will broadcast weekdays at 6:30 a.m. (Eastern), with a focus on business, finance, and breaking news in the region. It’s the second Asia-based initiative that the newspaper has announced this week; Tuesday, the Journal made public plans for a dedicated Indonesia news site.

But aside from a continued push overseas, Asia Today also represents the Journal’s continuing push into video as part of its “WSJ Everywhere” mission. A couple of weeks ago, Raju Narisetti, managing editor for The Wall Street Journal’s Digital Network, told me that despite the newspaper’s big jump into video — more than four hours of live video per day, some 1,500 videos per month, accessible across 18 digital platforms like iPads, iPhones, desktops, YouTube, Apple TV, etc. — there’s still a hunger for more.

“From a business point of view, we cannot generate enough video streams,” he said. “We are sold out. There is no shortage of demand to generate more video views.”

The Journal’s release on Asia Today noted that the video push has created “an 85% growth in video streams since the start of the calendar year for the Wall Street Journal Digital Network and has attracted a range of innovative advertisers across categories.”

Advertisers’ interest in video comes as Americans are spending more time with screens, and increasingly taking those screens with them. Earlier this year, the Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism found that nearly one-third of Americans are getting news on mobile devices, and increasingly across different platforms.

For the Journal, that shift represents an opportunity for pervasiveness in a media-saturated world — and video is one of the paths to get there. Narisetti calls portability “the big issue” that the newspaper faces. But the other big issue will be to make sure that a portable advertising experience complements the content that consumers are seeking.

“You have to create your content in such a way that it will travel,” Narisetti said. “But the real challenge is not content — it’s an advertising challenge. That’s where the challenge would be, from an execution standpoint. Conceptually, no matter where you want the Journal, I want to be there. But the question is how do we do it without messing up the ad experience?”

POSTED     June 1, 2012, 11:51 a.m.
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