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| November 8, 2018 – 1:31 pm | 107 views

The decline in advertising revenue was one of the major factors leading to the closure of many local newsrooms. Although the media industry is yet to find a sustainable model for financing local journalism in the digital age, a number of new initiatives suggest that adopting a new business model can help solve some of the challenges.

Speaking at newsrewired on 7 November, panellists discussed how they are experimenting with different business models, testing out memberships, audience engagement strategies and community building projects.

1. Membership and cooperative model

Since being rolled out three years ago, the Guardian’s membership scheme has become one of the most oft-cited models amongst major publishers in the UK and internationally. As newsrooms debate whether they need to follow suit, if the Guardian’s lessons in memberships are anything to go by, it can certainly help to get loyal readers to reach into their pockets and back their journalistic cause.

However, new media startups have shown creativity in this field too and are starting to rethink how to implement a membership business model. Look at how Swiss media start-up Republik is turning paying members into shareholders and has collected 7.7 million CHF (£5.8 million) from mostly memberships in a recent crowdfunding campaign.

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