First there was the Drudge Report.Now there is the Huffington Post. ... And Politico. ... And The Daily Beast.
And as part of my 20 Digital Media Predictions for 2009 series, I am suggesting that there will be others that successfully break into this space.
Why? Because five themes are at work here:
1. For the most part, the major news sources aren't yet hip to online traffic and marketing... that leaves a major opportunity for upstart, web savvy online content players who aggregate and create news.
2. It is (relatively) easy to drive traffic in these formats... and it is scalable. With the right team, it is possible to achieve large numbers quickly.
3. Consumers like their content aggregated and they like it delivered in blog-like formats (real-time, easily digestible, full of links).
4. Launching is affordable as it requires little up-front costs (development, dollars, etc). Meanwhile, data is easily accessible such that the business model and audience appetite can be assessed before warranting a full investment / resourcing.
5. Verticals fetch advertising dollars. And this trend will become more apparent in 2009.