Two years ago, we set out to create a revolutionary product that people would love. The Daily delivered great original reporting, excellent design, and custom interactivity to users every day. Although we have over 100,000 passionate paying subscribers, unfortunately we have not been able to build a big enough audience fast enough to make our business model work.
Memo to staff from The Daily’s editor in chief Jesse Angelo and publisher Greg Clayman.
The News: The two-year-old iPad only newspaper will shut down after releasing its December 15 issue.
The Issue(s): Basically, being locked into the iPad. Yes, the Daily had a hundred thousand subscribers, and yes, it built out a robust social media presence but going iPad only for the meat of its content was too much too soon. There were just too many people locked out (and locked in) for it to thrive.
Another way to put it is this thought from Trevor Butterworth, a former weekly columnist for The Daily:
So, The Daily meets its doom on December 15. The editorial section, et moi, bit the dust over the summer, so not much of a shock. The single biggest failing? You can’t create an entirely new brand and take it behind a paywall after 4 weeks, while limiting its footprint on the Internet, and then expect people to buy it. Where was the marketing?
Second, it simply added more average-reader content to a market saturated with free average-reader content. It didn’t have the courage to be cool, quirky, nerdy, obsessive or snarky. Its demise is a wake-up call for those who confuse cool technology with being cool - and those who think more of the sameness is going to produce a paying customer base for a mainstream media product.