From Time to … Coca-Cola (!), the Latest News From Publishing Sites

What Coke has soaked up from publishing sites; plus, Joe Ripp steps down, and The Daily Beast drives website traffic

In digital publishing, sites are where it all starts. But they can’t be where the consumer experience and audience development end. Far from it. As multiplatform magazines, Mequoda Members know that the homepage is a portal. It includes content, of course, but its more important purpose is to be a staging area for your entire multiplatform strategy.

Some digital publishers do it this way, and some don’t. Digiday has a few recent stories on big names with varying approaches. Let’s start the week learning more about each!

The Very Eventful Ripp Era Ends at Time Inc.

We’ve loved watching Joe Ripp work as CEO of Time Inc. in the years following its spin-off from Time Warner. He’s implemented a multiplatform strategy that warms our hearts and one that will be recognizable to Mequoda Members, including native advertising, events, niche strategy, a modernized CMS, and more. Now that Ripp is stepping down, Digiday takes a look at his legacy.

“With print ad revenues locked into a secular decline, Ripp made no bones about the fact that he was going to do more for Time’s advertising partners, both in print and online. Under Ripp, ads started appearing on Time’s covers, and advertising and sponsored content sales — once done title by title — were executed across Time Inc.’s portfolio. Time Inc. also opened The Foundry, a massive creative and content studio in Brooklyn, where editorial and sponsored content, particularly video, are now forged under the same roof,” Max Willens writes.

“In many ways, Time Inc. trades on the cachet of its oldest, best-respected brands. But under Ripp, the company made a serious effort to build newer ones, most of them aimed at very specific segments of the millennial audience. Sometimes, like in the case of Hello Giggles or Fansided, it did this by buying existing editorial properties; in other cases, like with Motto, or the Snug, it built them on its own, leaning on the best practices established by other digital publishers.”

When It Comes to Brands as Publishers, Coca-Cola Is the Real Thing

Coca-Cola’s content marketing is taking its cues from digital magazines and publishing sites, Digiday reports.


“In 2013, Coca-Cola took a risk: It replaced its corporate website with “Journey,” a site dedicated solely to storytelling and reporting in Coca-Cola’s positive, bubbly brand voice, staffed by a team of brand journalists. At the Digiday Content Marketing Summit in August, Coca-Cola’s global group director for digital communications and social media, Doug Busk, shared what the 130-year-old brand has learned through this pivot to publishing. ‘We’re never getting into an impressions game,’ he said. ‘We focus on how engaging the content is,'” Digiday reports.

“Since ‘Journey’ is an owned media outlet with no revenue share, its writers can focus on telling the most interesting stories possible that will garner the most engagement, Busk said. To measure how the content was performing, Coca-Cola created an internal metric called Expression of Interest (shortened to EOI) that is skewed toward measuring shares and comments over other indications of interest.”

The Daily Beast’s High-Performing Homepage Strategy

In this age of search and social side-door traffic, The Daily Beast has been laying out the welcome mat right out on the front porch, Digiday reports.

“The IAC-owned news brand lures 40 percent of its 22 million monthly readers to its homepage, and it drives 44 percent of its traffic every month from direct visits, up from just 28 percent two years ago,” Willens writes.

“While the Beast gets its fair share of traffic from Google and Facebook, it focuses more on getting those readers back via email (its subscriber base has doubled in the past year) and its app than on maximizing the reach of content it publishes elsewhere. It has eschewed Google AMP and, after a brief dalliance with Facebook Instant Articles, has stopped using those too.”

Which publishing sites do you draw pointers from? Tell us about them in the comments!

To read more about publishing sites and other industry news, visit Digiday.


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