Digital transformation: Learnings from Spotify, NYT, Mather, and Lucy Kueng

The latest episode of the FIPP Media Unscripted podcast – produced in partnership with PressReader – is now available on general release. It’s another action-packed episode, with four speakers from Congress each sharing their views on the latest incarnation of digital transformation currently being played out in the industry today. 

Hosted by Charlotte Ricca, the Episode 8 guests include:

  • Lucy Kueng – Strategic Advisor, Board Member, Author and Speaker
  • Arvid Tchivzhel – Managing Director of Digital Analytics and Data Science, Mather Economics
  • Tom Armstrong – VP of Global Advertising, The New York Times
  • Will Page – Author of Tarzan Economics, former Chief Economist of Spotify and PRS for Music, and Fellow at the London School of Economics

In the case of the latter, Page says that learnings from digital transformation in the music industry can absolutely be applied to the newspaper and magazine sectors. 

“Music went through 20yrs of digital transformation,” he says. “We spent 10yrs suffering… that is the first 10yrs believing that kids were going to buy CDs and downloads, which was just never going to happen. Then the next 10yrs embracing subscription. And I think the challenge that the newspaper and magazine industry face is how do you avoid that 20yr gap, and turn it into more of say a 2yr gap? It’s about avoiding that suffering and getting the business straight back to recovery.” 

FIPP is hip

When pressed on the primacies of how to implement this, Page had some extremely positive things to say about FIPP itself. 

“I think what I’ve learned about FIPP [during Congress], is that in all these media companies, there will be an international division. And the job of that international divison is not to compete with the other companies around the world, but to collaborate. So that’s about sharing best practice, rolling up the sleeves and saying ok let’s work out some practical steps that we can all take together!” 

“And that to me seems to be what FIPP is… it’s a collective of those collaborative people from all these different companies, and if FIPP can grow that energy within the business, where’s there’s more collaboration, that would give me a lot of hope for the future.”


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