The relationship between publishers and advertisers has always been complicated—even more so in the digital age. Digital users expect free content online, but resist advertising that is either too in-your-face or that feels disguised as news. Newspapers, TV news broadcasts, and podcasts have developed accepted methods for weaving in advertisements alongside their content, but news organizations have struggled to find that balance online. Journalists are also confronted with the challenge of creating content across a proliferating set of platforms, including Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Snapchat, in addition to the stories they are posting to their site.
At Vox Media, Melissa Bell and Lindsay Nelson are at the forefront of these challenges, and her innovative efforts are helping to pave the way toward more financially sustainable, honest journalism that works for publishers, advertisers, and readers.