Caroline Pouron, head of digital content at SR in Sweden, and Christoph Falke, general manager at Axel Springer Audio in Germany, went on stage to discuss the challenges of adapting traditional media to new digital formats.
In the last few years, Axel Springer, a publishing company founded purely in print, has been making forward-thinking and transformative changes at its core to transition to digital platforms. Falke underlines that if you’re going to risk something, you must be both brave and passionate about it.
With the growth of the podcast market, they are now investing in professionalizing it, focusing on German-speaking countries.
Back in the day, digital media was contributing only 5% of media. When Falke highlighted the need to invest in digital, it wasn’t consensual. Some people had questions about that strategy.
“We know that digital is the future” – Caroline Pouron
The transition to digital is also noticeable in public radio stations. At SR, the radio numbers were more than satisfactory; however, that doesn’t mean laying back and staying still. “We know that digital is the future and the change has to come from the inside”, states Pouron, “You have to change by leading examples”. Along with the additional responsibility of public service, SR has the monetary means to dare to try new things that others couldn’t.
According to Pouron, prioritizing podcasts involved “uncomfortable decisions”, regarding budget for example, and changing mindsets. Falke thus explains the importance of encouraging people to embrace the new strategy and explaining the new means so everyone can feel like a part of it.
Written by Michelle Coelho and Rita Silva
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