Mobile Content Gives Publishers a Chance for a 'Do-Over'

News organizations may have missed the boat on creating effective revenue streams from online content, but the emerging mobile market offers an opportunity to rethink and rebuild, said panelists at this morning's session on charging for digital content.

“You can’t build business models on what people should pay for. You build business models on what they will pay for," said James M. Brady, the president of digital strategy at Arlington-based Allbritton Communications.

Instead of worrying only about how to erect paywalls on the Web, Brady said, publishers should start to take advantage of the new frontier of apps, iPads, and smartphones.

“This is the biggest opportunity in a decade for a do-over,” said Kenneth J. Doctor, an analyst for Outsell/Content Bridges.

Location-based advertising, which could give businesses the opportunity to only serve their mobile ads to people within a certain distance from their location, is one possible way for publishers to build mobile revenue, said Brady.