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Tag: best practices

The Ease of Content Marketing for Publishers

How lucky are we, as publishers, to live in the age of content marketing and search engines. While other marketers struggle to become adept at content creation, it’s already in our DNA.

Just add search engine optimization skills, great website architecture and a genuinely content-driven email publishing program, and publishers can literally make millions on the Internet.

Meet Your Multiplatform Publishing Mentors

Spend two days with us, and you could become our next success story.


If you’re a magazine publisher in the digital age, you’re certainly savvy enough to succeed. And perhaps you’re satisfied with your revenue and business growth as they are.

But do you know the secrets to boosting revenues by as much as 20% over the

3 Ways You Might Already Be Ahead in Publishing

One thing we’ve noticed about the most successful publishers we know is that they have three major things in common. And it has nothing to do with being a household name, a ton of charisma or a rampant following on social media.

You Can Be a Better Subscription Marketer in Just Two Days

If you are a legacy print-only magazine publisher, not understanding multiplatform publishing strategy – the future spells doom for your magazine and your publishing career.

Did you know that most media executives don’t attend best practice workshops regularly, or take part in networking and peer groups?

They are the MVPs of their teams, but unlike star athletes, most don’t have a coach.

Fun with Paywall Pricing Strategy: When to Ask Them to Pay

If you struggle with determining paywall pricing and strategy, you’re not alone.
Recently, Hearst has been working on a more flexible paywall pricing and strategy, and the industry is abuzz. Max Willens at Digiday describes it as “a paywall whose permeability changes depending on who’s visiting and what they’re reading.”
“The new paywall replaces a system where editors

3 Reasons Why It’s Worth Outsourcing Subscription Marketing Management

Losing subscribers without gaining new ones is a universal fear for any subscription-based organization, and rightly so. When a decrease in active subscribers leads to an overall decline in revenue, publishers may find themselves facing uncertainty about the staying power of their product, or worse: the future of their business.

But what if we told you

Protected: Executive Council Update: Get the Most from your Blockbuster Content with the Haven Advanced Republish Manager

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9 Guidelines for Content Aggregators Who Recycle the News

Aggregating great content is just as valuable as creating great content

Content aggregation is often given a bad name, because it’s often done incorrectly.

The best content aggregators approach the process as the valuable art form that it is. Content aggregators recognize the web is all about content aggregation, and their work allows users to reach new depths on the subject matter they care about.

We first wrote about content aggregation in 2011. At that time, he had been researching best practices for content aggregation and strategies content aggregators should avoid.

10 Things to Consider Before Your Next Magazine Website Redesign

Every experience you’ve ever had building and rebuilding a magazine website typically begins with you explaining what you want, and then you telling a group of developers and designers what to do and what to fix. But when did you become an expert in digital publishing strategy and website architecture?

Managing Open Source Software for Fun and Profit

When you go shopping for a new car, you’re generally limited to the inventory on the lot. You might want gullwing doors like a Delorean or a new Tesla, but you can’t get them on an Audi. You can choose your color and wait a few weeks for your vehicle to arrive from another dealership, but you can’t get racing stripes without a custom paint job somewhere else. It’s not that different when buying proprietary software for your website and content management system, so why do so many publishers still head in that direction?

How to Capture and Convert Web Visitors

ACEM doesn’t exactly roll off the tongue, but if you’ve been following along for awhile, you know this acronym is baked into everything we do here at Mequoda.

5 Email Newsletter Best Practices You Can Fix Today

It’s amazing to see the evolution of the email newsletter – how brands use it to communicate, how the designs have changed over the years, and how the strategies of staying relevant have advanced.

Even though email newsletters have been around for years, they are still valuable for digital publishers. They are often a publisher’s largest source of revenue.

Protected: Executive Council Update: How to Write a Winning Spotlight

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How to Run a Roundtable Discussion

The steps to facilitating an effective roundtable discussion with roundtable discussion questions

Have you ever run a roundtable discussion?

Throughout my years in publishing, I’ve taken part in countless roundtables. During some, I was the facilitator and other times I was a participant.

Although there are many ways to direct them, my ideal approach to running roundtables focuses on the fundamental needs of the attendees.

How to Attract 80% of Website Traffic Through Recycled Content

ACEM doesn’t exactly roll off the tongue, but if you’ve been following along for awhile, you know this acronym is baked into everything we do here at Mequoda.

Protected: Executive Council Update: How to Write a Winning Library Preview

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The Best Audience Development Job Description We’ve Seen

Audience development personnel have a very specific, and incredibly important job within an organization.

Finding the right audience development staff can mean the difference between thousands of email subscribers and tens of thousands of dollars in additional revenue.

The best audience development job description I’ve ever seen comes from one of our clients.

Protected: Executive Council Update: Six Sigma for Offer and Creative Testing

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4 Ways to Benefit from an Engagement with Mequoda

You wouldn’t hire a lawn mower repairman to fix your car, so why do so many publishers seek the support and advice of consultants and web developers that have never worked in the publishing field? At Mequoda, we know content, and we know content marketing, because we’re a group of journalism veterans turned consultants and

5 Metered Paywall Best Practices for Generating More Revenue from Premium Content

One of the biggest moving targets in Mequoda best practices is the metered paywall.

The biggest question we get is, how much free content is enough? And you have to be careful when you’re a special interest publisher comparing your own paywall model to the New York Times or the Financial Times who have historically given away a lot of free content. Why? Because they publish a lot more content than you. But even the New York Times recently scaled back from giving away ten articles, to giving away five articles, and their reasoning was to increase subscriptions.

Best Digital Magazine Publishing Software You Can Use to Launch Your Digital Magazine

Digital magazine publishing software is important; which option are you using?

Publishers have been trying digital magazine publishing software during the last few years in hopes of creating the best digital products for their audiences. And like everything else in digital magazine land, digital magazine software has evolved at light speed since we made our initial recommendations in January.

Here’s our latest (opinionated) look at the magazine software landscape.

Subject Line Spam Trigger Words

Email subject lines are just one part of the email delivery equation. Emails are delivered to inboxes based on subject lines, content, and reputation. In some cases, engagement is even applied to this filter.

How Free Newsletters or Advisory Services Are Using Haven CXMS

If your goal is to generate advertising and sponsorship revenue from a free newsletter or advisory service with a robust subscription and advertising website, the Mequoda Haven CXMS can do it, and has done it for many other publishers like you.

How to Get a $35,000 Strategic Business Plan for Just $10,000

If your goal is to generate advertising and sponsorship revenue from a free newsletter or advisory service with a robust subscription and advertising website, the Mequoda Haven CXMS can do it, and has done it for many other publishers like you.

10 Most-Read Audience Development Posts of 2017

Our top-read audience development posts of 2017 give valuable insight into email and copywriting best practice methods.
We’ve put together our most-read audience development posts from 2017 on the Mequoda Daily. These posts included advice on how to design and send better email newsletters and how to improve your social media optimization skills for better audience

Audience Development Evolves with Industry Standards, Engagement

The evolution of audience development comes through the evolution of online tools, social networks and communities.

Today we’re looking at some recent news for audience development, including a set of standards being shared by the Media Rating Council (MRC).

How and When to Clean Your Email List

It’s not uncommon that when we talk to a group of niche publishing professionals, and we end up in a big discussion about cleaning your email lists.

In today’s Strategy Spotlight, Don Nicholas, Chairman & CEO of Mequoda explains when to clean your list, and how to combat fears about selling a smaller list to advertisers.

25 Email Design Best Practices for Publishers for Mobile and Desktop

It’s been reported that the average email users spends at average of 51 seconds on each email newsletter they read. If this average pertains to your market, you need to develop a way to maximize your email’s ability to connect with your audience.

Strategy Spotlight with Don: The Case for Daily Emails

How often do you publish an email newsletter? Once a week? Twice? For our clients, many of them publish 5 to 7 days per week. Sound crazy?

In today’s Strategy Spotlight, Don Nicholas, Chairman & CEO of Mequoda explains why a daily email newsletter is the right path, and should be considered a service to your readers.

13 Examples of Professional Email Subject Lines

If you could, you’d hire a professional email subject line writer. You would, because you depend on your email list to sell magazine subscriptions or ads to advertisers, so smashing together 50-100 characters on the fly every day is a stinky approach to accomplishing those goals.

8 Fundamental Internet Revenue Models Publishers Use to Generate Online Advertising Dollars

Some helpful hints on generating revenue through online advertising

What comes to mind when you think about revenue models on the Internet? Is it a relatively new model that was designed specifically for the Internet? Or do you think of traditional business models that have transformed from the physical world to the digital world?

That may have been a trick question, but if you answered “both”, you are correct. The Internet offers an array of revenue models, which in turn have their own subsets of revenue-generating models. If this sounds complex now, just keep in mind that this all means revenue can be generated in many ways. As you read on the intricacies should become more understandable.

5 Ways Web Magazines are Better than Print Magazines

Don’t scoff—we truly believe that web magazines can be the ultimate platform for periodical content for most magazine publishing brands. The problem is that, as we’ve covered in prior weeks, most web magazines aren’t living up to their potential. We are very close to destroying magazines as a medium by the way our industry is transporting them to the web.

Web Magazine Worst Practices: Are Your Digital Strategies Dooming Your Magazine?

The magazine industry has lost their way.

It’s been a long time since the dawn of digital publishing and publishers bringing their content online, but at this point we hoped that the industry would catch on and be rigorously testing their digital products.

Unfortunately so much has stayed the same, and while many magazine publishers seem to be working towards putting together web magazines, most have failed, as we’ve explained in recent posts documenting our journey through more than 300 magazine websites and what they think are web magazines.

5 Best Practices in Digital Magazine App Publishing

Now that so many publishers are issuing digital editions, it’s time to take a look around and quantify some best practices that we’ve noted in researching apps and digital magazines.

First, let’s do some definitions. Terminology is changing daily, as it always does with new technology and new products, but for now we should at least attempt to clarify a few things. Some of these definitions come from outside Mequoda, but others are our own preferred definitions that serve to clarify some of the confusion in the industry right now. Your mileage may vary!

Scaling Marketing for a Growing Product Line

Multiplatform publishers have a lot more choices – and decisions – to make about marketing campaigns. It’s almost enough to make even a strong person run screaming for the nearest direct mail package designer, isn’t it? But you don’t have to surrender to the confusion – paralysis by analysis is not an option!

5 Ways Your Web Magazine Design is Failing Your Readers

I have complete confidence in saying this: “your web magazine design is not very good.”

And why does this roll off the tongue so easily as such a blanket statement? Because we’re in the midst of a massive research study on the state of web magazines, and out of 300 of the top B2B and B2C magazines, only 13 had what we consider to be a best-practice web magazine. We were sure the study would encompass at least 100, but we’re currently on the hunt to fill that number out to at least 25 and are finding hope in—surprise—niche magazines.

Strategy Spotlight with Don: Build a “Smart Website” Smarter Than Your TV

When you think of a Smart TV, you think of one that’s connected to YouTube and Netflix and HBOGo all in one interface. If a TV can be so smart, why are so many websites, so dumb?

Our Mequoda Haven CXMS, is a “smart website” that is fully integrated. It knows when someone is a registered user and/or a paid subscriber. And something different will happen if you’re logged in, and if you’re not, and based on what you’ve purchased, it will try to sell you different products or upsell you. A smart website should only message you with ads that are based on data in your profile, and this is fundamental to maximizing advertising inventory.

How to Measure Domain Authority and Improve it without PageRank

Link-building. It seems like that term is as old as the marketable internet. Since publishers have been developing content, we have known that we need traffic to our websites, and that inbound links are the way to do it. As Google came along and trained us on their search optimization best practices, link-building became even more important because it affects how we rank in search engines and we were able to measure domain authority along the way.

How to Generate Additional Publishing Revenue Through Your Website Portal

As a publisher, you should make your website’s top goal to maximize your TOPX (Total Orders Per Ten Thousand) page views by making sure that every page on your website is ready to convert visitors into buyers and subscribers at any moment and increase publishing revenue.

Your Portal is the main page where you give away free articles and content. For many magazines, this is on their main domain, like or If you’ve been following along with Mequoda you know that we advocate for every page on your Portal to have a set of best practice conversion architecture we call 3C Zone Architecture.

Protected: Executive Council Update: Get More Control Over Your Imports

If you are on an upgrade retainer, you probably already know about Ultra Subscriber Uploader because it you got this enhancement as part of your monthly expense. However if you haven’t, we’d like to introduce you to this massively enhanced bit of functionality.

Protected: Executive Council Update: Best Practice Blockbuster Management Improves GVI by 34%

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Publishers Driving Website Traffic Through Social Are Making Changes

Driving website traffic happens beyond Facebook in the world of social; Meredith launches brand for Facebook and hubs; Google outlines Flexible Sampling for publishers 
Driving website traffic is always on the mind of audience development managers. We’re seeing publishers acting in accordance with this notion, as they dive deeper into a variety of locations, including Facebook,

The Art of Writing Killer Inline Text Ads to Build Email Circulation

Although a text ad could refer to any ad consisting of text, we’re currently referring to those that are part of your conversion architecture. These ads are placed in the dead center of all your articles and invite your website visitors to download a free product that will get them on your email list.

Bringing Discipline to Chaos

Mequoda is a little unusual as an organization, people tend to feel puzzled about us. Are we a consultancy? Are we a developer? Most often this confusion becomes apparent when we meet one of two types of clients, described below.

Protected: Executive Council Update: Your Portal Revenue Scorecard

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The Advancement of Website Redesigns Includes New Strategies & Tools

Website redesigns come from Salon and ProPublica; Harvard Business Review utilizes new website tool
Content publishers who make website redesigns and try new tools as part of an evolving digital strategy show their prowess in advancing their brand online.

Today we’re looking at three publishers who have recently gone this route, and the reasons for doing so.

Learn how to create sales letter landing pages that sell when you download our FREE Landing Page Handbook.


Mequoda Rocket Awards: Top 10 Haven CXMS Systems of 2017

This year, our winner was Countryside Network, who launched their Mequoda System in February 2016. Countryside was founded in 1969 and today includes four farming-related magazines (Backyard Poultry, Countryside, Dairy Goat Journal and Sheep!) and a portal at that spans all four niches.

Protected: Executive Council Update: 9 Ideas Shared at the Mequoda Summit

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How To Find the Best CMS for a Magazine

The best CMS for a magazine should be built for publishers, not everyone else
There’s no such thing as a one-size-fits-all content management system. The best CMS for a magazine should be built with a publisher in mind. After all, you have a different business model than a software company, e-tailer, or a small business using

How Many External Links Should You Include in Articles?

In the book The Giving Tree, a young boy visits a tree and forms a relationship with it. At first he simply wants to swing on it’s branches, but as he gets older he becomes more materialistic. He asks the tree, which has grown fond of him, to turn its apples into money, it’s branches into a house, and its trunk into a boat. The tree obliges, but eventually becomes a stump.

If you’ve ever been on an external link regimen by your company, you might feeling like the stump in The Giving Tree after a lifetime of giving away apples and branches, trying to please. There is a lot of information about Google’s search signals online, and one of those, reported by SEO’s, is linking to external website. But are you giving away more than you’re getting?