The Latest Audience Development Strategies Consider Chatbots, Video

Publishers are using Chatbots for audience development; Popularity in video still growing; Publisher sending commenters to social networks

Video has been a tool for audience development and a medium for premium content for years. However, the popularity of this medium continues to grow and new insights are discovered from it. Chatbots are a new tool being used by publishers to connect with audiences differently.

We begin today with a look at the new phenomenon of chatbots for audience development. Publishing Executive reports, “Publishers have found that chatbots are a powerful way to engage with their audiences and monitor that engagement in order to gain valuable insights on reader interests. While chatbots may appear to be simply the digital form of a automated call center, they can offer a more customized and engaging experience to consumers. Using digital insights like geographic location, interest, past behavior, and more, chatbots can help publishers provide the right information at the right time to their readers.”

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The article continues with recommendations for publishers turning towards chatbots for audience development. “As with any new technology, form should drive function and not the other way around. When exploring the viability of chatbots, publishers should first consider what types of interactions they want to automate in order to improve user experience: accessing relevant information quickly, being automatically informed of new content aligned with their interests, customer service activities, etc. Bots can perform all of these activities — it’s just a matter of identifying and prioritizing the ones that will be most appealing for your audience. For publishers, the obvious, high-priority functionality is likely the ability to deliver desired content in a timely manner to subscribers.”

Our next story turns the focus to video and its place in audience development. We begin with video’s efficacy for social engagement. Folio: reports, “The “pivot to video” cliché in media is starting to become self-parody. We’ve heard a number of legacy print publishers murmur that this gold rush may be dubious at best and yet another instance of chasing the social media dragon. But for the time being, it’s hard to argue with consumer attraction to sight, sound and motion. Many of the brands reporting engagement hikes across Facebook and Instagram in our October Social Media Boxscores data, for instance, credit video as the catalyst.”

The article continues with significant growth statistics for a number of publishers using video. Here’s an example of one: Real Simple enjoyed a 241-percent increase in Instagram engagement as a direct result of early holiday programing— the #RSholiday campaign. This is an exemplary full court Instagram press that leverages a range of tactics for the platform.

Our final article looks at a publisher who is closing comments on site while directing audience members to social networks. Talking New Media reports, “The latest media brand to give up on comments is Crain’s Chicago Business which said that it simply did not have the resources to moderate its comments section to keep the trolls out.”

“Like other media sites, Crain’s Chicago will be directing readers who wish to comment on their stories to social media. This, of course, only increases the power of outlets like Facebook and Twitter, while really doing nothing to lessen the number of trolls who will comment. But, at least, this becomes someone else’s problem.”

Utilizing audience development strategies proven to be successful is the way to gain advantage online. If you’d like to discuss how we can help you increase your audience, revenue and profits, please reach out to schedule a no obligation chat with Don Nicholas, our Founder, Chairman & CEO.


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