How much is a word worth?

Journalist friends lament the declining value of their words, both in terms of eyeballs reached and $ paid.  The bald truth is that long-form writing is under threat.  I find it deeply ironic that traditional brand consultancies continue to churn out deck upon deck of join-the-dots, consensus-building research that more often than not ends in some positioning gem like “Quick and easy, everyday.”  At 1M per engagement that’s $250,000 per word not 25c.  Yet whose words are worth more?