Google Cuts Off Keyword Data

Digital publishing news for September 24, 2013

Dang, it happened. Search Engine Watch is reporting that Google has encrypted all search queries thus cutting off all keyword data. Thom Craver writes, “Encrypted Google searches don’t pass the keyword data through to websites, thereby eliminating the ability to track users by their keyword searches. The biggest impact for many site owners has been not being able to segment users by keywords within their web analytics software.”

As Don put it when we spoke to him on this issue, “it makes the GVR [that we build for our clients] even more important.” Keyword data can still be found in Google Webmaster Tools as well as on other search engines like Bing.

iOS 7 Bad For Publisher Visibility?

minOnline is reporting the impact iOS 7 has on the visibility of publications, specifically in the Newsstand app.

Steve Smith writes, “Two consumer conveniences in the iOS 7 also diminish the publishers’ visibility. The auto updating feature no longer requires user-interaction to update an app, which eliminates one of the ways developers reminded users of their app’s presence on the Apple deck. In fact, regular updating of apps had become a distribution and retention strategy for some publishers. The App Store continues to list the apps that the OS automatically updated, so there is a notification element still there.”

Smith also goes on to explain that the alerts platform, which was overhauled in iOS7, is now easier to overlook.


Random House Utilizes FlipBoard

Media Daily News is reporting that Random House is utilizing Flipboard (who just raised $50m, by the way) to help it promote its digital book business.

Erik Sass writes, “Random House is getting into the digital magazine business, in partnership with Flipboard, in hopes of boosting book sales. Their first products include digital magazines curated by Margaret Atwood, promoting her new novel “MaddAddam,” and, exploring the fictional world created by George R. R. Martin in his “Song of Fire and Ice” fantasy novels, which began with “Game of Thrones.” It will be interesting to see if this strategy works for Random House.

Esquire Network Goes Live

The Esquire Television Network started broadcasting yesterday. The Associated Press Derrik J. Lang reports, “The network kicks off Monday with a two-hour 80th anniversary retrospective about the network’s namesake narrated by “Mad Men” star John Slattery. “Knife Fight,” which is hosted by The Gorbals owner and second season “Top Chef” champ Ilan Hall, and a docu-series about Scottish beer aficionados James Watt and Martin Dickie titled “Brew Dogs” both debut Tuesday.” Esquire Network is aimed toward men who seek more sophisticated program than Spike TV.

Lang adds, “When the network was originally announced earlier this year by owner NBC-Universal, the channel was supposed to debut in April and take over G4, the geeky network catering to gamers. The launch was delayed to cook up more programming. Earlier this month, NBC-Universal decided that its Style Network would instead be the one reborn as Esquire Network.”

I wonder if the new owners of Maxim will be waiting to see how successful Esquire Network is before launching their own network?

Vanity Fair Gets A New Digital Director

minOnline is reporting that Mike Hogan has been named as the new digital director at Vanity Fair. Steve Cohn writes, “Mike Hogan, who began his Vanity Fair career as an editorial assistant in 1998 (six years into the reign of VF editor-in-chief Graydon Carter), is returning as digital director, effective Oct. 7.”



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