ABM CEO Gordon Hughes said ABM members would contribute to the study, and findings would be released later this year. The goal, he said, is to identify upward of 10 business models that could be used by business media organizations to diversify beyond conventional media revenues and drive their growth.
The project is consistent with the push ABM has been making over the past couple of years to broaden the view of business media beyond the sale of traditional trade advertising pages, which have been declining as the overall media marketplace shifts toward digital media models. The fastest areas of growth for the ABM membership have been digital media sales, as well so-called "face-to-face media," a term the ABM created to address the rapidly expanding conferences, trades shows, events, and awards related businesses that have become big drivers for business media companies. Other new business models pushed by the ABM in recent years include so-called "rich media" businesses, revenue streams created from the rich business databases generated by business media publishers that may have previously been under exploited.