Multiplatform Publishers Experimenting with New Product Initiatives

Multiplatform publishers succeed because of the innovation they bring through their organizations

We like the term “multiplatform publishers” because it implies that numerous activities are at play, allowing a publication to experiment, meet their audience members where they want to be met, and expanding their brand throughout various channels.

We’re seeing some publishers doing just that, and working on some initiatives that are new again.


For instance, some publishers are playing around with games again, Digiday reports. “In the past couple months, Hearst Digital has begun producing branded puzzle games and quizzes for MSN; both Mic and the Washington Post have begun experimenting with non-branded game bots on platforms like Kik and Facebook Messenger, respectively; The Outline, Josh Topolsky’s venture-backed “New Yorker for millennials,” rolled out a game within a week of going live, called “Musk Lander”; meanwhile, in print media, the New York Times announced it would publish a special Puzzles section in the Dec. 18 edition of its newspaper.”

And it seems that sometimes playing can pay off, as the article continues to share more about the success of games. “Games like crossword puzzles, word jumbles and sudokus have been fixtures in newspapers and magazines for decades. And plenty of publishers, particularly newspapers, continue to drive small, but meaningful chunks of digital revenue from them. The New York Times, for example, earned $2.4 million in the third quarter of 2016 from crossword app revenues. Other publishers, including USA Today and The Los Angeles Times, have come to depend on stable, healthy flows of ad revenue from readers who come by regularly to play everything from crosswords to matching games.”

In other news, Bloomberg is playing around with its flagship app and working on new ones, MediaPost reports. “The company sees the app as a way to foster deeper engagement with its readers. Users can experience content that appears on all Bloomberg’s platforms encompassing digital, TV, video, radio/audio, print and live events. Each time users engage with Bloomberg’s content, the app tailors itself to provide a more personalized experience.”

According to the article, “The news on the app will be curated by a dedicated editorial team as well as by an algorithm that provides content based on region and time of day. Different stories will be featured in the morning, afternoon and evening.”

The article continues, “The app is also more colorful than its black-and-white predecessor. Navigation has changed from a “hamburger” menu to tabs on the bottom of the screen. On the home screen of the app, markets data is front-and-center as a banner at the top of the screen, which users can click on to easily access the markets page.”

Finally, we’re seeing another publisher turning to a sponsored pop-up shop, like WIRED did earlier this month. MediaPost has the story. “Home decor magazine Domino has opened its first brick-and-mortar pop-up shop, located in lower Manhattan and sponsored by Target.”

The article continues, “The store features products curated by Domino‘s editorial staff and inspired by the magazine’s winter issue. For example, glassware from Anna Karlin, home accessories from Fort Makers and textiles from Cold Picnic will be for sale.”

What new initiatives will multiplatform publishers focus on in the coming year? We will keep you posted on all our findings.


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