SODP Dispatch - 25 August 2023
How publishers can benefit from user-generated content, 8 WordPress best practices and more tips and news for digital publishers
Today, let’s talk about print media and its role in the digital era.
Our managing editor, Andrew Kemp, discusses this subject his weekly Editor’s Note column:
Echo chambers, though widely acknowledged, often remain unnoticed in our personal lives.
Take, for example, the notion that digital media’s rise is ushering in print’s inevitable end. Perhaps not dead, but it’s certainly on life support.
It’s a perception that tends to be reinforced by stories such as The Guardian’s coverage of the closure of one of the UK’s two large-scale printers.
Stop the Press
German-backed Prinovis’ closure, first reported in November, leaves London-based rival Walstead printing nine of the UK’s top 10 magazines.
Reading such stories makes me question whether I’m right in arguing that print still has a place in the wider media landscape.
Still, looking into Prinovis’ closure reveals a slightly more interesting narrative than the “print is dying” trope.
It seems Prinovis used rotogravure printers, compared with the far more widespread web offset printers used by Walstead. I won’t pretend I understand much about the mechanical details of each, my office printer is nightmare enough, but there does seem to be a noticeable cost difference between the two technologies.
FROM STATE OF DIGITAL PUBLISHING
HOW PUBLISHERS CAN BENEFIT FROM USER-GENERATED CONTENT
Thanks to the growing momentum of generative artificial intelligence (AI) tools, the digital publishing ecosystem is undergoing a seismic shift. These tools have the potential to upend how content creators work entirely.
At the same time, as more and more AI content is published, there’s a genuine concern that stories could become more vanilla and less personal. However, this should create an opportunity for publishers looking to stand out to create a emotional connection with their audience.
User-generated content (UGC) is one way to offer that personal touch. Moreover, search engines may place higher value on UGC as the flow of AI-generated content picks up pace. One can’t deny that AI-driven technologies will influence the digital publishing trends of the future, but it’s essential not to overlook the power of a human connection.
6 BEST MAGAZINE APPS FOR PUBLICATIONS ON MOBILE DEVICES IN 2023
Digital magazine apps can transform static pages into interactive and engaging formats, significantly improving the reading experience on smartphones and tablets.
Mobile device use now dominates how people access the internet, with 91% of those aged 16-64% relying on a mobile device compared with less than 60% who use a personal laptop or desktop. At the same time, demand for unlimited reading access to digital publications is growing strongly.
The global news and magazine app market was valued at $1.18 billion in 2021 and is projected to witness a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 11% between 2022 and 2028.
For publishers, selecting the right digital magazine app can be the difference between effectively reaching their target audience or falling behind the competition. These apps’ features, usability and quality play an essential role in delivering content to readers and keeping them engaged.
Let’s explore the six best magazine apps for publications on mobile devices in 2023, shedding light on what to look for and how each app can tailor the digital reading experience to different needs and preferences.
WORDPRESS BEST PRACTICES FOR PUBLISHERS – LEARNINGS FROM WPPS
The WordPress Publishers Performance Summit 2023 (WPPS) was held on July 27, 2023. A completely online event, it featured 11 panelists from brands like Forbes, The Boston Globe, Google Multidots, NBCU Local, and others who shared their expertise on WordPress best practices over three hours.
Following the event and based on the learnings, we have put together an ebook that summarizes how publishers can use WordPress to secure and scale their digital property, enhance monetization efforts, and evaluate performance.
Access the ebook (PDF)
TOOLS AND RESOURCES
Learn how to add annotations to your GA4 reports. Learn more
This guide is for those interested in effectively practicing project management in a newsroom environment to do so effectively. Learn more
BITE-SIZED INDUSTRY NEWS
How short-form video is helping The Economist gain young users. Read more
Google releases August 2023 broad core update. This is the second Google core update of 2023. The rollout is expected to take up to two weeks to complete. Read more
Apple announced several new updates to its podcast creator tools, including the addition of a dashboard where podcasters track how their listeners engage with their shows. Read more
Meta is launching a web app for Threads. You’ll be able to post, interact with other posts, and look at your feed. Read more
What’s it take to make a great daily newsletter? Axios’ Kendall Baker is planning to bring one to Yahoo Sports. Read more
Disctopia, a podcast hosting platform for independent creators, announced a partnership with Semrush to optimize podcast episodes with its Podcast Hosting App. Read more
FUTURE OF MEDIA
A group of prominent media, tech and research executives have raised nearly $3 million to launch an independent policy research center focused on addressing global internet issues. Read more