The Future of News

Or "Reality Bytes"

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Why don’t more organizations get usability? Because they often measure the wrong things.

“Feeling overwhelmed, consumers want support - not increased marketing messages or “engagement” - to more quickly and easily navigate the purchase process,” Corporate Executive Board (CEB) stated in a study it published in 2012. “Brands that help consumers simplify the purchase journey have customers who are 86 percent more likely to purchase their products and 115 percent more likely to recommend their brand to others.”

In a study of 7,000 consumers, CEB found that only 20% want a relationship with a brand. In a study by Havas Media in 2013, over 90% of Western consumers said they wouldn’t care if most brands disappeared. Brands and marketing has a hugely inflated view of how important they are in the lives of customers. It’s time to get real.

Customer Convenience,” Gerry McGovern

Filed under usability measurement

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Magazines Get a Way to Measure Their Reach Across Media Platforms

[The Association of Magazine Media’s] new monthly system, Magazine Media 360, would measure audience engagement for print and for digital editions and video across desktop and mobile devices. It will also capture data for five social media networks, although those will be reported separately.

“Given the success of many magazine brands on those new platforms, continuing to rely on print circulation and ad paging to determine demand for magazine media would be like measuring the viewership of the Super Bowl exclusively based on the people who watched it in the stadium,” Ms. Berner said.

Magazines Get a Way to Measure Their Reach Across Media Platforms,” Leslie Kaufman, NYT

Filed under magazines measurement reach

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Monday, Facebook will roll out a rebuilt ad platform, called Atlas, that will allow marketers to tap its detailed knowledge of its users to direct ads to those people on thousands of other websites and mobile apps.

“Facebook has deep, deep data on its users. You can slice and dice markets, like women 25 to 35 who live in the Southeast and are fans of ‘Breaking Bad,’ ” said Rebecca Lieb, a digital advertising and media analyst at the Altimeter Group, a research firm. The new Atlas platform, she said, “can track people across devices, weave together online and offline.”

With New Ad Platform, Facebook Opens Gates to Its Vault of User Data,” Vindu Goel, NYT

Facebook offers advertising retargeting of FB users outside of FB. It all starts with the data that you give to FB.

Research shows that relevant ads aren’t considered ads — they are content to those who need the products or services being offered. But, can targeting ever be precise enough so relevance is personal enough that people only see the ads they need when they need them? 

I keep thinking about Minority Report.

How soon until FB offers that level of targeting?

Filed under facebook advertising retargeting privacy

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Your social network is owned by advertisers.

This is from the beta invitation message on Ello, a new social network that says it won’t take advertising or sell your data.

Your social network is owned by advertisers.

Every post you share, every friend you make and every link you follow is tracked, recorded and converted into data. Advertisers buy your data so they can show you more ads. You are the product that’s bought and sold.

We believe there is a better way. We believe in audacity. We believe in beauty, simplicity and transparency. We believe that the people who make things and the people who use them should be in partnership.

We believe a social network can be a tool for empowerment. Not a tool to deceive, coerce and manipulate — but a place to connect, create and celebrate life.

You are not a product.

According to Jessi Hempel at Wired, Ello’s business model will be freemium — you can do these things for free, but, in the near future, if you want to do other things, presumably really awesome and valuable things, you will need to pay for it. Hempel thinks that won’t work. It works for Google, so I’m not sure why it wouldn’t work for other companies.

I also think Facebook has jumped the shark and lost it’s cool factor. Maybe it’s just my circle of friends, but it feels like my feed is mostly filled with short videos from hyperbolic sites like BuzzFeed. And, unless I feel compelled to share something beyond my first tier of relatives, I’m not opening it. It just’s not compelling content.

It will be interesting to watch how Ello grows.

Filed under social networks facebook ello

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How do we judge whether technology is making us more productive, or just lazy and impatient?

Economists think about outsourcing chores in terms of opportunity costs. If you can work during the hour you would have spent mailing a package, it would probably be a better use of your time — as, perhaps, would taking a nap, going for a run or spending time with your child.

“People underestimate the value of time,” said Susan Athey, an economics of technology professor at Stanford University’s business school. Paying someone a few dollars to run an errand, she said, is worth it to someone who would otherwise have to take half a day off work to do errands, lose money by missing a deadline for an e-commerce return or pick up a child late from day care after getting stuck in line. It is not just an indulgence for the well-off, she said. The trade-off between time and money is particularly crucial for those with less of each.

Why We Sit Back and Let Apps Do Our Chores,” Claire Cain Miller, 

Filed under technology startups shipping

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Nearly three quarters of young people prefer print (books, that is)

The 16-24 generation is still firmly in favour of print books, new research shows, with 73% saying they prefer print over digital or audio formats.

Exclusive research conducted by Voxburner for The Bookseller showed that while nearly three-quarters of young people said they prefer the print form, only 27%  prefer e-books and 31% said they don’t buy e-books at all.

Many young people also use libraries, with the research showing that 44% regularly go to public libraries while 66% use a college or university library. More than half (53%) said they would borrow e-books from public libraries if they were readily available.

Nearly three quarters of young people prefer print,” Charlotte Eyre, The Bookseller

Filed under print books research

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Secrets Of The Most Shared Business Publishers

Business news is hotly discussed in the social space. Some of the most talked about digital news sites of recent times (Business Insider, Quartz) cover business daily, while stalwarts like the Wall Street Journal and Forbes have also made themselves very visible in the new social landscape.

We used the data to analyse the biggest stories by network, the most ‘social’ writers at different sites, and overall site performance. Insights also allowed us to graph their average share counts per story.

What we see in these niches is that news events are more likely to be shared than in the general category of ‘business’. In all three sectors, there’s a lot more sharing of news events, rather than the career advice and opinion seen in the general business category. As coverage gets more specialist, there’s more clustering around industry announcements.

But even here, in the highest reaches of specialist reporting, there’s evidence that social distribution has a key role to play in spreading content. 

Secrets Of The Most Shared Business Publishers,” Newswhip

Filed under Social media publishing news

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Why publishers are learning how to buy ads

The subject of paid distribution is a touchy one. Publishers don’t want to leave the impression that their organic audience isn’t big enough, forcing them to pay for traffic to fulfill an advertiser’s campaign (to say nothing of paying to promote editorial content, which is even more of a taboo subject.)

But the reality is, it’s hard to get people to click on and share native ads. So just as the newsroom has begun to embrace the function of audience development as they recognize social media’s role in reaching readers, distribution of native ads has become part of the planning at the outset of an ad campaign, whether it’s outsourced or done in house.

Why publishers are learning how to buy ads,” Digiday