How The New York Times is growing subscription products beyond news

2022-11-29. The New York Times recently announced they added 180,000 digital-only subscribers during the third quarter, and they are on track to reach their goal of 15 million subscribers by 2027.

by Brian Veseling | November 29, 2022

While the news product remains the core of The Times’ digital subscription success, their growth has brought its own set of challenges. Among them is to keep current subscribers onboard while bringing in new ones.

A key way the company aims to do this is by putting a greater emphasis on its products beyond news, said Ben Cotton, NYT’s Head of Subscription Growth during our World News Media Congress.

This is not to suggest The Times has any intentions of moving away from news. They don’t, and Cotton made that clear. 

"The way we talk about this is, if our products at The New York Times are the solar system, then news is the sun, right in the middle, and the other products are building off of that," he said.

These additional products are intended to have their own appeal and audiences, and may represent significant revenue streams either on their own, or by being bundled with news or other products.
An opportunity to grow subscriptions beyond news
“This is not a huge change in strategy or anything like that,” Cotton said. “It’s very consistent with the news mission that we have had over the last several decades. But we do think it speaks to an opportunity we see to grow our subscription product beyond the news product and into a number of other areas.”

Take NYT’s Games, for example, which includes the popular word game Wordle that The Times bought earlier this year, along with their famous, long-running crossword puzzle and several other games designed to keep ...

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