Digital Transformation Trends Media Companies Should Know in 2022

Technology is always in a state of flux, and the media industry is no exception. With digital strategies more important than ever before, understanding the shifting landscape can be key to getting ahead of the competition and increasing advertising revenues. In the current hyper-competitive market, media companies need to innovate, staying ahead of the digitization curve to reach new audiences and monetize impressions.

For those looking for a way to capitalize on these key digital transformation trends are sweeping the media space. Whether you’re looking for new opportunities or simply want to understand what the competition may be considering, keep these avenues in mind when considering your next move.

Content Fragmentation

Content of all kinds, from articles to visual content, is now being distributed across more platforms than ever before. Take TV and video streaming, for example, a space that was once unique to Netflix and Hulu is now filled with apps and sites from every major name in the game, from Peacock to HBO Max to Paramount Plus. Everyone wants a piece of the pie, which means a steadily increasing number of major players. And having a variety of content is no longer good enough.

In order to reach as many people as possible, spreading content as widely as possible can be a benefit — without stretching yourself too thin, of course. Find the solutions that are best able to reach your target demographic and diversify as appropriate.

A Rise in Subscription Models

When money is the name of the game, businesses will do whatever it takes to bring cash in the door. In many cases, this means moving toward a subscription model, playing content behind paywalls. Countless content providers, including newspapers and streaming sites, are now charging users for access.

Paying for content or access when free alternatives still exist may seem silly, but consumers don’t think so. In 2018, 46% of people used a streaming service, like Netflix. In 2020, streaming app revenue reached $24 billion, indicating significant growth in the last few years alone. The New York Times tells a similar story; the company reported $709 million in digital revenue in 2018, owing in large part to its subscription model, which grew 18% year-over-year.

The End of Third-Party Cookies

Media companies with a finger on the pulse have been watching the deterioration of third-party cookies for some time now, but the end is in sight. Those who want to minimize the impact are already starting to switch to alternatives, including implementing their own systems and altering processes to collect first-party data rather than third party data.

Those who have relied on third-party data without considering alternatives may feel trapped, but there’s a lot to be said for collecting and utilizing your own data. Companies are encouraged to start by considering the data they already own, like information about subscribers, implementing robust CRM software solutions, and using enticing offers, like a personalized shopping experience or discounts, to collect additional info.

AI to Improve the User Experience

AI isn’t some tool of the future found in sci-fi movies; it’s here and it can do a lot to appeal to consumers. AI makes it easy to personalize content and attract subscribers, ensuring an experience is more specific to what customers are looking for rather than simply casting a wide net and hoping it works.

A well-functioning AI system will take into account user data as well as behavioral science. This kind of tool can tap into the emotional state and current needs to showcase products and services most likely to connect. When consumers are targeted in such a specific manner, they’re more likely to make a purchase.

The use of AI ties in closely to the rise in personalized content — both can deliver a rich, engaging user experience. With so many websites and platforms that provide an interface customized to what users want to see, like Netflix recommending shows based on the previous viewing, failing to take advantage of personalized content can mean falling behind.


In today’s market, it’s imperative to know who your user is and what they want. Journey mapping, or a data-driven approach to optimizing the user experience, can be the difference between making a sale, encouraging a subscription, or sending a customer to the competition. The more you can do to make a consumer feel a personal connection to your offerings, the better.

Digital transformation is happening now and media companies need to ensure that they are leaning into these trends, to generate powerful, reliable revenue streams. From using AI tools to create a personalized experience to employing a subscription model to better monetize content, there are many avenues available.

Originally published at on April 26, 2022.




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