How Data Is Fueling the Future of the Publishing Industry

How Data Is Fueling the Future of the Publishing Industry

PopSugar is using visual and interactive analytics to create viral and engaging content.

PopSugar and its digital shopping platform ShopStyle combines a unique blend of content and commerce. Together these brands are attracting over 100 million monthly visitors worldwide.

Channeling the phenomenal success of Snapchat has also proven to be an incredibly shrewd move. PopSugars made-for-Snapchat videos have generated 19.5 million views in April, 26 million in May, 35 million in June and July looks to continue this trend. These figures are further evidence that Snapchat is no longer just another app for faddy teenagers.

Millennial women-focused, the core audience has an insatiable desire to learn more about what’s going on in the world. But, it’s technology and innovation that is proving essential to growing their audience. Could this data-driven business help anticipate the stories that readers will click on?

A combination of news driven and evergreen topics are staples of any content strategy. But, what is trending? Or what will trend? Is the answer that all editors are searching for. Over 100 PopSugar content creators leverage Adobe Analytics to carefully observe trends and historical data, which is then leveraged in creative ways to generate the best content pieces.

Creating content that immediately engages their readers is not as simple as it may sound. But the use of these data analytics has increased traffic by over 300%. Processing data at the “speed of thought” seems to be paying dividends for the media and technology company.

Across the digital landscape, it’s the consumer who is king rather than content. Advertising models are also being forced to evolve to reflect this change. Marketers finally recognize that they must find another method of navigating around those pesky pop-up blockers favored by readers.

Businesses also realize that if their product is associated with the irrelevant pop-up ad that taints their online experience, it will do more harm than good to their brand. The key to consumers hearts is through engaging content to deliver the best experience across all platforms seamlessly.

An excellent example of how data analytics can create a viral hit is the fruity pebbles no-bake cheesecake video from PopSugar. Attracting over 10 million video views and 322,000 shares on Facebook since it went live in June. But, this was no accident.

The days of spending an entire day designing complex queries in Business Objects are thankfully disappearing. Visual and interactive analytics are what delivers real value with tangible results.

Facebook’s algorithm famously favors native video. Some believe that this could potentially affect the future of the written word. The hybrid model of sight, sound, and motion that consists of a video with words overlayed seems to offer a halfway house for everyone.

We all process information differently. Whatever our format preference, its the measurement of visits, time spent and shares that are the new currency. The ability to take a holistic view of a site’s content to differentiate between high visits to an article and low engagement is equally as important.

Audiences are already turning away from clickbait articles and websites that ruin the online experience with popup ads. It seems that PopSugar is already ahead of the curve by using analytics to understand what their audiences do and do not like.

There is a counter argument that creators providing content that they know their readers will love will just create an echo chamber rather than stimulate debate. But I guess that’s a discussion for another day.

On my podcast, I chat with Chris George, PopSugar’s senior vice president of product marketing. We discuss how they have leveraged data analytics in creative ways to generate the best content pieces.

How Data Is Fueling the Future of the Publishing Industry

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