Digital Publishers Use Compelling Strategies for Building Audience, Generating Revenue

Digital publishers at Condé Nast establish new storefront; Instagram Stories attract viewers; Ads being repurposed as content by Business Insider, Cheddar

Digital publishers are connecting various parts of their businesses to develop new revenue streams, and generating more traffic and a bigger audience at the same time. Today we’re looking at some of the ways publishers are doing this.

Our first story looks at Condé Nast’s new digital storefront. Digiday reports, “The legacy magazine publisher, which launched a new digital store offering hundreds of products this month, is moving past the direct mail and email newsletters it sent to its print subscribers in favor of targeting subscribers on platforms like Instagram, driving people to purchase directly from its brands’ owned and operated sites and tapping into Condé’s research team to find new audience segments to target with offers.”

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Back in January, the longtime magazine publisher got some ink when it told The New York Times about its plans to launch a digital storefront where people could buy not just framed prints of iconic photos taken out of its magazines’ archives but versions of those images stretched across a whole host of items, including greeting cards ($32), iPhone cases ($40) and even baby onesies ($33). Unlike the Times, which relaunched its own brand store earlier this summer, Condé is not holding any inventory, instead creating the products on demand.”

Even though digital publishers have traditionally found it difficult to get their content writers and commerce teams to work together, it seems Condé Nast isn’t experiencing that issue. “While it’s often difficult to get content and commerce teams to work together for publishers, there’s financial incentive for the brands to do this: Any time a customer purchases an item from the store, the Condé brand supplying the art earns a percentage of the sale.”

We move to digital publishers capitalizing off Instragram Stories, which are driving lots of traffic, particularly for Time. minOnline reports, “Time’s following of 4.2 million with nearly 2.9 million engagements for June come in part from one of the more sophisticated uses of the new format to bring breaking news topics into the Stories flow.”

Separate from Stories, Time notes that the video consumption has exploded on Instagram in the last year. It has seen three consecutive record-breaking months in streaming—bringing its first half total to 77.3 million streams, which is up 1,470% from H1 2016.”

Our final story of the day looks at digital publishers tackling their desire to provide more video content to interested audiences. WSJ reports, “As online publishers scramble to feed video-hungry platforms such as Facebook and Twitter, some are using this one simple trick: Just post ads!”

“Publishers including Business Insider and Cheddar now frequently employ the tactic, which often involves reediting a TV commercial or marketing video by a third-party company, adding some subtitles and music, and reposting the resulting clip to their own social media accounts and websites.”

The article continued with an example of the work. “Financial news company Cheddar posted a video to its Twitter and Facebook accounts featuring the “Sock Slider,” a contraption designed to help people put socks on their feet without stretching or straining. The video, complete with a Cheddar logo in one corner and an “as seen on TV” logo in the other, featured the same footage as a 60-second TV commercial for the product but with Cheddar’s own music and captions, rather than the commercial audio…Since it was posted Wednesday, the Sock Slider video has racked up over 130,000 “views” on Facebook alone.”

Are you among the digital publishers seeking ways to generate more revenue streams and drive more traffic to your website? To discuss how we can help you grow your audience, revenue and profits,schedule a free introductory conversation with Don Nicholas, our Chairman & CEO.


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