The motto for Jim VandeHei, Politico co-founder and CEO of the new news venture Axios, is that “media is broken.” One way he hopes to fix it starts with how the industry obsesses on advertising revenue and site clicks, with journalistic quality an afterthought. He will have at his side, Washington’s top political journalist, Mike Allen.
The political and business news outlet began with a pre-launch platform Monday including an introductory slate of newsletter offerings and will launch in full Jan. 18. The company begins with the premise that banner ads and long-form native advertising don’t work.
In its place, Axios will only offer advertisers a type of short-form branded content. It will fit all on one screen and will lie more naturally within its editorial concept of providing readers bite-size bits of hard news and information.
“People want more digestible news. They want it shorter and more shareable, so it makes no sense to not have ads structured the same way,” says VandeHei. “To keep doing the same thing as has been done in media nowadays means death.”
Axios launches with 10 advertising partners, including J.P. Morgan Chase & Co., Boeing Co., BP PLC and PepsiCo.