Wednesday 5th June: Putting audiences first with live blogging

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I was pretty excited when Tickaroo approached us about doing a Media Briefs episode. There have been a fair few stories recently about the surprising popularity of live blogs, and in the ‘ultimate election year’, it’s a fascinating topic to dive into.

Tickaroo co-founder and CEO Naomi Owusu doesn’t disappoint. She’s got some great examples of publishers in Germany and New Zealand who have been using live blogs for more than just election night coverage, from exploring local people and stories to entire blogs with pictures and comments sourced from readers.

It’s a neat way to get beyond just writing and posting an article to making people feel part of the news. As Naomi explains, live blogs force you to get really close to the audience, watching when they respond and having real-time interactions.

If you aren’t familiar with The Fix, you really should sign up - they do a wonderful job of surfacing stories from European publishers that don’t usually get much airtime from trade press. Not only does this outline how independent platforms are building business models in Portugal, but it offers some valuable context about surviving and thriving in a country which has no system of structured funding for journalism.

I don’t think many publishers offer lifetime subscriptions, so this won’t be an issue for most of you. But it’s a fascinating read about what happens when you try and fob off lifetime subscribers with a digital edition. “Our agreement was the lifetime of you or the lifetime of the magazine, if you pay $99—and $99 back then was a lot of money for a magazine subscription,” an irate Samir Husni told Slate.

Love them or hate them, audio articles are here to stay. Here’s yet another example of a publisher seeing success with synthetic read-outs of its content for busy audiences who prefer to listen. Interestingly, Le Monde has launched this functionality exclusively in its subscriber-only mobile app. So far, they’ve found that readers who use the feature are 1.7x more engaged.

Who knew audio could be such a strong engagement tool? Come along to the Publisher Podcast Summit next Wed 12th June to find out more.

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