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Tag: ecommerce

Monetizing Social Media: Bloomberg’s Strategy

Monetizing social media by converting side-door traffic into subscribers is one of the most important challenges publishers currently face. Convincing curious visitors to sign on as customers via quality content that’s skillfully distributed and diversely packaged requires patience, experimentation, and diligence, but it’s well worth the effort when those additional revenues start rolling in. Remember: It’s not the number of likes that define social media strategies; it’s the the level of audience development that will drive true reader engagement. Easier said than done, of course, but let’s take a look at how a legacy publisher like Bloomberg pulls it off, via Digiday, along with some other relevant recent articles.

Metered Content: Another Digital Magazine Goes for It

More and more, metered content is becoming de rigueur for digital magazines looking to generate higher revenues with higher quality product. As big believers in smart subscription strategies, we love to see this shift. From The New Yorker to Pando to Time Inc. digital, publishers are molding their content around monetization with experimental tactics and finding results. This isn’t just a smart bet; it’s smart strategy: As our 2015 Digital Magazine Market Study shows, consumers are willing to spend on metered content done right. MinOnline is on top of this industry trend, as always. Let’s take a look at their coverage of the latest metered content adoption, plus other recent posts.

New Adobe Publishing Platform Coming Later This Summer

Adobe publishing is a pricey option for publishers, but many believe the company’s products are worth every penny. While we proudly partner with Mag+ and direct our niche Mequoda Members to that platform, there’s no doubt that we have tremendous admiration for the Adobe DPS, which offers a full array of tools for digital magazines. Talking New Media recently covered the announcement that the latest Adobe publishing platform – originally billed as Adobe Publish but now back to the line’s original Digital Publishing Solution – will be released this summer. In the meantime, a beta version is seeing release. TNM also discusses some interesting new moves from Time Inc. digital and Rodale.

Ecommerce Content Strategy Taking Shape for Publishers

Earlier this week, we relayed news of tech network Purch’s Series C grab of $135 million, fueled largely by its prowess in mixing content and commerce. Purch’s success is a sign of the times. Ecommerce content strategy is a rapidy emerging consideration for many publishers digging for more revenue sources, but success doesn’t come easily: The formula is a tricky one to master depending on niche, platform, and audience, among other factors. Several companies have been in the news recently for the strides they’re making when it comes to ecommerce content strategy. Let’s take a look at articles from Women’s Wear Daily, TechCrunch, Digiday, and Capital New York.

Mobile Publishers: Advertising + Video Trends

eMarketer is full of new data for mobile publishers and multiplatform media companies this week. Here are five stories of interest for digital magazines and other brands:

Mobile and Desktop Collide – What Are You Doing About It?

With apps, mobile has overtaken desktop in total Internet usage, but not in web browsing

Mobile Internet usage has surpassed desktop Internet usage, according to comScore, but contrary to predictions in recent years, mobile web browsing itself is flat, if not in decline. What does this mean for publishers?

Digital Publishing Strategy Evolving for Companies

Here’s the thing about digital publishing strategy: It never stands still – especially during this exciting time for the industry – and companies like yours are continually adapting. We’re here to help!

Folio: Multiplatform Publishing Tops MPA Agenda

The MPA’s annual American Magazine Media 360 Conference (in the past called the American Magazine Conference) took place last week in New York City with an estimated attendance of 500, and the program discussions signaled a unified commitment to multiplatform publishing.

Canadian Elle Enters Ecommerce, Video Derby

Elle Canada is partnering with retailer Hudson’s Bay to allow its readers to shop by way of video on their mobile devices, Women’s Wear Daily reports. The video series launched earlier this week and features model Pamela Bernier and branded content for Hudson’s Bay, available via, the magazine’s iPad edition, or through its mobile app.

Lucky, Condé Nast Plan to Divide and Conquer

After years of speculation about its fate – would it shut down or go all digital? – Lucky finally has some resolution, writes Emma Bazilian in Ad Week: It will spin off from Condé Nast and join ecommerce platform BeachMint to form independent company The Lucky Group.

Introducing: The NEW Mequoda Pro

If you’ve ever contemplated attending one of our Subscription Website Publishing Intensives, but the time – and budget – just haven’t been right, I have a new way for you to learn the proven, profitable Mequoda Method right now.

Introducing, the new Mequoda Pro. If you’re a member, you can log in right now. If you’re not, keep reading.

Pinterest Gains Audience Development Relevance as a News Provider

Facebook and Twitter aren’t the only social networks relevant in the news world; Pinterest is now an important social network in the news world. Kurt Wagner writes, “A new study from Gigya, a social login provider for many media companies, including ABC, NBC, and FOX, found that 20% of all “media/publishing”-related content shared to social networks in Q3 was shared on Pinterest. Facebook (40%) and Twitter (30%) maintained leads in the category, but Pinterest gained some ground after accounting for 18% of media and publishing shares in Q2.”

E-Commerce Comes to AllYou

Publishers truly enter the digital age when they offer ecommerce options in their print publications. AllYou, a member of Time Inc.’s Lifestyle Group, has recently done just that by including mobile activations in its print magazine.

The Netflix of Magazine Subscriptions Now Has 100ish Titles

Next Issue, basically a Netflix for magazines subscriptions, now has over 100 titles. For $14.99 a month people get access to about 93 different publications and growing quickly. Bloomberg Businessweek, People and The New Yorker are just few of the publications available on the service. Their platform works on tablets and PCs. StackSocial, an eCommerce platform for tech publishers, is offering a two-month subscription to Next Issue Premium for free.

Magazine Publishers to Leverage Print on Demand?

New print on demand opportunities are were presented to magazine publishers at Retail Marketplace 2013 according to IPDA Publishing & Retail news. Ingram Content Group (ICG) presented options to help magazine publishers leverage their print on demand technology.

Karlene Lukovitz reports, “ICG’s core premise: Since POD print (and digital) products are created and fulfilled to match supply with demand (one-offs based on prepaid consumer orders or publisher-determined small numbers of copies)–and the publisher’s cost and profit margin are predetermined–POD capabilities minimize waste copies/costs, while enabling sales to new (including global) markets/customers. ICG also believes there is potential for employing POD in traditional retail channels.”

Magazine News: Publishers are Focusing on More than Digital Magazine Software

Digital magazine publishing success considers tablet growth and mobile sites too

Digital magazine software initially focused on the app. Although this is still a prominent part of digital magazine publishing, many publishers are starting to look at the bigger picture by considering the value of mobile websites, the tablet market, and even print content.

Week in Review: November 19th, 2012 – November 23rd, 2012

Catch up on the Mequoda Daily’s blog posts for this past week

Ecommerce Website Design: Top Components of Your Online Store

What your ecommerce website design should look like from the first page to the thank-you page

Publishers sometimes forget that they are retailers; publishers do sell subscriptions, memberships, books, ancillary products, events, etc.

It’s smart for a publisher to think like a retailer: Get people into your store, where they can become your customers. And when they become your customers, get them to come back for more.

Do You Understand this Billion-Dollar Asset?

The Audience Development Summit 2012 shares the most profitable strategies for developing an online audience

The success of online businesses relies on the billion-dollar asset: online audiences.

Ecommerce and online advertising generates billions of dollars each year through online audiences. Without these audiences there wouldn’t be a need to produce content for multiple platforms, create engaging ads, and open digital storefronts.

Clay Hall on Aspire Media

A few minutes with Clay Hall

I’ve known Clay Hall for more than 30 years and have had the pleasure of being his consultant for the past seven. Clay is a familiar voice in our community, having attended seven Summits as both participant and speaker. With the sale of Aspire Media to F+W Media, I think it’s a good time to give everyone an update on his current thinking about digital marketing and publishing before he disappears into the forests and rivers of our great country for an extended period of time.

Understanding Google Analytics

In 90-minutes, learn which metrics really matter

Audience Development Upgrade Easy as 1-2-3

New workshop, new needs analysis, new analytics suite and consulting program

It’s been said that it may be hard to remember that the original goal was to drain the swamp, when you’re up to your ass in alligators. The process of building website traffic is complex and varied. There are day-to-day responsibilities, analytics everywhere, conflicting priorities, and more to do then any team can ever hope to accomplish.

What’s Next for Digital Publishers?

The future cannot be easily predicted, but current observations can be made to help design a picture of the digital future that may not be too far from reality.

For instance, we knew the mobile Internet and mobile devices were going to have an impact on publishers. We just didn’t realize how impactful it would be originally. We are now finding and outlining the new digital revenue streams that exist due to new technologies. We’ve already seen apps, ebooks, and digital magazine publishing that utilizes clickable ecommerce. We’ve seen the importance of organic audience development through popular social networks, search engines and reputable link building. So what’s next for digital publishers?

6 Simple Changes You Can Make on Metadata

Auditing your SEO data with tips from Mequoda Summit West 2012

Metadata has two distinct functions; it helps search engines understand your content, and it helps users engage with it. Without properly designed metadata, search engines and users alike may neglect your content.

At the Mequoda Summit West 2012, we shared a few tips for metadata that will help your SEO efforts and engage your audience easier. Take a look at these tips below.

See How You Do on Our Publishing Quiz…

A challenge from some SIPA 2012 speakers

Take this mid-week quiz concerning speakers at the upcoming SIPA 2012 Conference, May 20-22.

1. Which of these choices is NOT on Jeanne Hopkins’ list of seven indications that your mobile marketing may—ahem—not be so good?
a. Your marketing approach isn’t local
b. You’re looking at the wrong metrics
c. Your website is not mobile-optimized
d. Too many people in your company understand your mobile strategy
Hopkins from Hubspot will be speaking with Jeremy Dempsey from Integrate on Marketing Automation, Monday, May 21, 11 a.m. – noon.

11 Tips for More Conversions

Three types of conversions that will improve your online business

There are multiple conversion types that need to be addressed by digital publishers. The analysis will provide statistics on different parts of the online business, including engagement efforts, marketing efforts, and overall success in generating revenue.

For engagement, we can take a look at social media efforts. Today, social media is a nexus for engagement online, and can lead to more complex relationships, including turning social media subscribers into email subscriptions and buyers.

Marketing Ideas You Can Implement Today

A Refresher Course in Good Marketing Ideas

Send email from a person, not a company. Check search traffic when choosing blog titles. Include brief surveys on thank-you pages. These are just three of 20 “Low-Hanging Marketing Fruit” listed in an excellent article on Hubspot Blog last week. It’s a good refresher course for some things we may know but may not always remember to do. Let’s go through a few of them—adding some comments more specific to SIPA members.

An IT Department for Publishers Lacking One

Not all digital publishers have the opportunity to staff their own IT department. This is especially true for very niche publishers operating with a small internal staff.

However, to succeed in the digital magazine publishing world, frequent updates to your website are needed. And if it isn’t major changes to layout or ecommerce, it’s typically the daily task of testing to make sure your most important pages are operating to their highest potential. Testing changes and current settings is instrumental in avoiding bugs that can cause a site downtime.

Building a Better Website for Less

The demands of digital publishing websites today is much different than five years ago

Do you like the way your website looks? If so, don’t get too attached to it. Your website will continuously change to meet your customers needs, and functionality needs of your business.

In order to grow online, digital publishers need their website to do a few specific jobs. First, it has to be well optimized so it can drive website traffic. Next, it was to include subscription opportunities, so visitors can convert into email, RSS or email subscribers. Finally, the website has to have an ecommerce aspect, which for most digital publishers, includes the ability to sell single products or subscriptions.

9 Elements of a Customer Experience Management System

Components that help online publishers maximize customer relationships

Through the use of multiple technology partners, online publishers have the ability to organize their customer relationships. Due to its nature, a customer experience management system is as strong as the sum of its parts, which can increase the efficiency of an online business by automating numerous processes.

A customer’s experience with a company is detailed by all the individual interactions; from the actual content and products a company creates to the external communications with employees.

Tablet Ownership is Exploding – What’s the Penetration in Your Market?

Interweave conducts a Tablet Ownership Survey, leading to a better understanding of their digital audience

Now that we’re clear on the explosive growth of tablets, it’s time for publishers to determine the tablet usage specific to their audience.

Interweave, a major art and craft media company, has done just that. The Tablet Ownership Survey, conducted in October 2011, revealed a very clear picture about how Interweave’s audiences own and interact with digital devices.

Creating an Email Performance Report

Email is a multifaceted tool for online publishers and content marketers. It can be used to deliver editorial e-newsletters, product promotions and week-in-review compilations.

Ideally, professionals use this medium to help facilitate revenue-generating transactions. However, email is another tool for brand recognition, which allows publishers to stay on the minds of their recipients, even if purchases aren’t made initially.

Biblical Archaeology Society Launches Bible History Daily

An informative interview with Susan Laden, publisher at Biblical Archaeology Society

The Biblical Archaeology Society’s Bible History Daily launched this month to become our 17th complete Mequoda System to go live. In honor of the occasion, we asked Susan Laden, publisher of Biblical Archaeology Society to talk about the company and the website’s launch.

As Susan explained, the Biblical Archaeology Society serves the public with the latest that scholarship has to offer in a fair and accessible manner, while serving as an important authority and an invaluable source of reliable information.

The Daily Deal: Newspaper & Magazine Publishers Discover Four New Ad Models

Rhode Island Monthly, The New York Times, Hearst & Interweave discover the four newest advertising models

Daily deals websites like Groupon and LivingSocial are becoming very popular for publishers who are looking to make some extra affiliate income from their deal-hungry subscribers. Unfortunately, outsourced companies, like Groupon for example, take between 50 and 100% of the cut from local retailers and continue to get a lot of bad press from struggling small business.

Interweave Launches FlockShop for Artists and Crafters

New daily deals will be offered to artists and crafters through Interweave’s FlockShop

Interweave announced the launch of FlockShop this week. According to its news release, FlockShop is a one-deal-at-a-time eCommerce site that offers special discounts on art and craft products at up to 60% off the retail price.

Although Interweave is well accustomed to selling their own products, like instructional books, magazines and DVDs, FlockShop features an array of non-Interweave products. The available quantities of products per sale range from a dozen to 200 and are available for only a few hours.

Mequoda System Metrics

All Mequoda Systems share audience development components but have different methods of generating revenue

I always find it interesting to watch, listen to and facilitate the interaction between different publishers who are new to Mequoda Summits.

One thing that often happens when talking about Mequoda Systems is that they assume it’s a single business model. Although there are thousands of publishers running systems that utilize the open community standards of a Mequoda System, those new to the system typically have a misconception that all Mequoda Systems are generating revenue the same way.

SIPA Member Profile: McKinney Provides Solutions

Mike McKinney, President, comHAUS, Inc.

What was your first job out of college and how did you get into this business?
After a stint as Apple student rep, I went to work on an hourly basis as an AE in a small marketing firm in Dallas—and worked my way into a salary and a client base. I am proud to boast that I have generated more money for my employer than they have paid me in wages since the week I graduated college. We wrote a strategic plan for a client who wanted to start a service bureau for Voice Mail and Fax on Demand. The day we presented the plan they told us, “Great idea. We think you should do it.” So, they paid us for the plan, we took the technology and became an interactive fax service bureau, FaxResources. In 1995, FaxResources merged with the Dallas Cowboy Insider—thrusting me into early epublishing. Then we merged with !nfaxamation in ’97, which moved me to Denver. !nfaxamation merged with International Teledata Group (ITG)—which was an enlightening experience in corporate dysfunction—causing me to launch comHAUS in ’99.

Week in Review: June 13th, 2011 – June 17th, 2011

Catch up on the Mequoda Daily’s blog posts for this past week

What to Make of New ‘Shoppers Confidence’ Law

New ‘Confidence’ Law May Need Your Attention

On Dec. 29, 2010, President Obama signed Bill S. 3386 into law, the “Restore Online Shoppers’ Confidence Act.” The vote passed by unanimous consent in both houses and was one of four bills that the President signed that day so it kind of flew under the radar—although it will definitely affect the most people (of those four bills).

The text of the new law can be found here; it’s not that long and makes a decent read. It is designed to protect consumers from unfair and deceptive sales tactics on the Internet. So it’s well-intentioned and—while perhaps repeating some good practices that thorough and honest marketers already adhere to—may weed out those whose practices are deceptive and bring the industry as a whole down. The law came out of Sen. Jay Rockefeller’s aggressive investigation of online marketing practices involving the club industry.

Social Sign-On for Social Shopping in 2011

How retailers are now utilizing social media

Social sign-on is quickly becoming popular among online retailers.

The process allows consumers to log into their Facebook account instead of registering as a member on an ecommerce website.

Many Internet marketers prefer this method because it gives them access to user profiles, which helps in product targeting.

Read What Your Peers Say is Working

The Secrets of Success

Here are 10 strategies that SIPA members are having success with at this current time.

1. We are investing time and resources in improving and expanding our emedia position in our markets, while building more engaged communities both online and offline.
–Diane Schwartz, senior vice president & group publisher, Access Intelligence

SIPA Member Profile: Hall Weaves Magic for Aspire

Clay Hall, CEO, Aspire Media, LLC, Loveland, Colorado

SIPA: What was your first job out of college and how did you get into this business?
Hall: Started publishing magazines while in college—Richmond Magazine in my home town.

Has there been a defining moment in your career? Perhaps when you knew you were on the right road.
When I flunked retirement and started Aspire Media. I retired too early—age 46—and got back into business at age 50 during the most challenging and exciting time in my 33 years, owning, operating and advising media companies.

Two Tips on Mobile Usability Testing

This free report from Mequoda Group discusses tips on mobile publishing strategies for usability, design and content distribution

(Nationwide)—For online publishers, mobile page views and clicks can mean more revenue. For online retailers, mobile ecommerce is emerging for smart phones and portable devices like netbooks and tablets.

Mobile is a hot topic. New technology is being created and purchased by users who thrive on the advancements. Online advertising is everywhere, and focusing specific content towards your audience can help create stronger relationships with those always on the go.

4 User Tasks for Website Homepage Design

Successful website homepage design allows visitors to achieve their goals

Is your website properly designed to meet the expectations of your visitors? Often times websites encourage visitors to take an additional step, be it a request for more information, a visit to a different web page found at the website, or the step of making a purchase.

While studying Mequoda Website Models, we have come across five commonly used tasks that users engage in. These common tasks make up for 80 percent of user activity at the sites we looked at.

Diverse Marketing Tips From Texas and Sears

Marketing to a Diverse Audience, Part 1

I wrote an article a few years ago about a newspaper in San Angelo, Texas, that scripted a series of house ads starring their very own employees. The series was called “Get Connected Every Day with the San Angelo Standard-Times” and was part of the paper’s “Passion Campaign” that let readers see a bit of themselves in the paper every day.

“It fit into this whole philosophy of improving our relationship with the community,” the marketing director said. “It was an important first step in the process.”

Tips from the Now-Searchable SIPAlert Daily

The Search Is ‘On’ for SIPAlert Daily Articles

Good news: SIPAlert Daily articles are now searchable on the SIPA Website. To commemorate the occasion, here are some popular clips of information from the past three months.

From the very first Road Taken member profile, the two most important concepts for Melcrum’s Robin Crumby:
First, keep it simple: Information businesses get complicated very quickly, so stick to the formats that work best. Second, squeeze the lemon: It is always tempting to diversify into other topic areas, but focusing on your core market yields the best returns.

Week In Review: June 28th, 2010 – July 2nd, 2010

Catch up on the Mequoda Daily’s blog posts for this past week…

Recent Study Shows High Conversion Rates for the iPad

What does this mean for online publishers? Shopatron, a provider of global eCommerce solutions for consumer goods manufacturers, announced recently that sales conversion rates for the Apple iPad are much higher than rates for other mobile devices.

Tis the Season for Holiday Themed Email Subject Lines

How publishers are using Seasonal email subject lines this time of year to sell more products and increase email open rates

Achieve Higher Click-Through Rates by Testing Templates

How to increase revenue per thousand emails sent
The Mequoda Email Performance Report measures your split tests to help maximize email revenue and profit