Niche Strategy + Cross-Device Content Serving Publishers Well

Wall Street Journal explores niche strategy, while Hodinkee perfects it; meanwhile, Thomson Reuters mobile approach picks up speed

Nobody knows niche strategy for publishers like we do, which is why we love to see big-name legacy companies adopting it and smaller, scrappier sites finding success with it. The same goes for content that can help you cultivate audiences across multiple devices – it’s what we do!

Digiday, always a reliable source for the latest industry trends, once again rings in with three stories on these very topics. Let’s take a look.

Wall Street Journal Goes Vertical With Niche Strategy

With more and more brands becoming publishers, it’s only fair that more and more publishers become brands producing B2B content that homes in on executives and other specific industry consumers. The Wall Street Journal is one of these, and it recently launched another vertical property as part of its large-scale – and, ultimately, small-scale – niche strategy.

Logistics Report is the latest in a string of vertical Wall Street Journal sub-brands, the first of which, CFO Journal, launched back in 2011. That launch was followed up a year later with CIO Journal, Risk & Compliance Journal in 2013 and the marketing-focused CMO Today in 2014. The verticals, which appear under the C-Suite in The Journal’s business section, are aptly named, given that CFOs, CIOs and CMOs are, while a relatively small group, top of the list of decision-makers that brands want to reach,” Digiday‘s Ricardo Bilton writes.

“The shift from general interest news to more specific coverage is an inversion of the usual playbook publishers follow today. The likes of Refinery 29, The Verge, and Business Insider have ditched focus for scale, and have broadened out their coverage to reach more people and bigger brand advertisers.

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“With Logistics Report, however, The Wall Street Journal has opted for focus — all in the hopes of reaching a very specific, well-heeled group of endemic brands. UPS, its launch sponsor, is supplementing the site’s articles with its own sponsored content series, some of which was written by WSJ Custom Studios, its native ad unit. [Editor Dennis] Berman said that going focused also improves the value proposition of the C-Suite newsletters, whose open rates average 40 percent.”

Hodinkee Builds Brand With Strong Audience

While The Wall Street Journal has the financial flexibility to balance a niche strategy with a broader one, other publishers have to go all in on one or the other Hodinkee – the acknowledged authority on watches – is in the latter group, Digiday reports.

Hodinkee emphasizes quality over quantity, posting four expert-level articles a day, and its video series enhance that coverage. In addition, the site has ventured into e-commerce. It boasts an affluent audience, 1 million uniques a month, 132,000 Instagram followers, and 70,000 Facebook fans, Digiday reports.

Thomson Reuters Content: Coming to a Screen Near – or on – You

Speaking of watches, Thomson Reuters wants to be on Apple’s. And every other screen you can think of. The company is developing app after app after app, Digiday reports.

“We’re thinking about what happens from the time our customers wake up to the time they go to bed,” Thomson Reuters Advanced Product Innovation Head Robert Schukai told Digiday. The term for this concept? “Dayflow.” We like it!

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To read more about publishers employing niche strategy and cross-device content, visit Digiday.

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