Mary Redon | for editor and editor
2026 is expected to be the pivotal year when digital newspaper ad revenue exceeds print newspaper ad revenue, according to the latest Global Entertainment & Media Outlook report from PricewaterhouseCoopers. The United States will be the first major market to see this change. “The historic moment, which will eventually be replicated in many other countries around the world over the coming decades, has been accelerated by the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on existing trends affecting the US newspaper market,” says The report.
Frequency trends for printing, as we know, are moving away from full print delivery in seven days. “But I would say it’s probably happening over longer timeframes than a lot of people had anticipated coming out of COVID,” said Kevin Rehberg, vice president of client development at Illinois-based Alliance for Audited Media. . We recently caught up with Rehberg to see what AAM is doing in the changing market.
AAM, a North American-focused nonprofit that performs digital, print, and other publisher audits, has made some changes in the wake of the outbreak of COVID, simplifying the reporting practices followed by newspapers. Now, newspapers publish their aggregate circulation data twice a year instead of four times a year.
Additionally, in 2020, AAM launched a third-party audit program for digital publishers as a tool to allay concerns about digital ad fraud and to increase media buyer confidence. The AAM Digital Publisher audit focuses on verifying publisher traffic sources by analyzing their business operations, website traffic, and traffic sourcing policies. Audited publishers are included in the AAM Audited Domain List, a file of all publishers who have gone through the process.
“It’s a fantastic way for publishers to show they have low bot traffic on their website, which is very important as ad fraud continues to be a growing problem in the advertising and marketing landscape. marketing,” Rehberg said. More than $11 billion was lost to ad fraud in the United States in 2020, according to cybersecurity firm Cheq.
New York-based IAB Tech Lab (self-proclaimed as a “nonprofit consortium that engages a community of members globally to develop core technology and standards that enable growth and trust in the media ecosystem Digital Publishers”) lists Digital Publisher Audit certified publishers in its Compliance Registry on iabtechlab.com. “AAM was the first company listed here and is a great example of how the industry supports our efforts to distinguish quality digital inventory from all the rest. Digital savvy buyers can then prioritize these publishers and make purchases more direct with them, knowing that the audience they have access to is verified by an independent third party,” said Rehberg.
The best of the rest
The Alliance for Audited Media also participates in trust.txt, an industry initiative developed by the nonprofit JournalList to help identify publishers as members of trusted industry organizations and associations. It’s a way for legitimate publishers to stand out from other websites, according to AAM.
“We have a trust.txt file on our website, and we’re one of the first groups to jump on the trust.txt bandwagon. All of our news media and magazine clients who are verified and audited are on our trust.txt lists,” Rehberg said.
It separates the best news media companies from the rest, Rehberg said. There is a lot of ad fraud based on fake news media website URLs when there is no real content behind it, he said. “It’s such a programmatic and volume-based environment on the buy side that buyers don’t realize it when they’re shopping.”
The Association of National Advertisers founded the AAM in 1914 as the Bureau of Broadcast Auditing to bring order and transparency to the media, the group said. Advertisers, buyers and publishers are members of the AAM. Its board of directors is made up of publishers, advertisers and agencies.
Mary Reardon is a Wisconsin-based writer and editor.