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Inaugural British Media Awards winners announced

April 27th, 2012 | No Comments | Posted by in Awards

The Economist and Future Publishing took away the most prizes with two awards each at the annual British Media Awards last night.

The Economist was named Media Company of the Year, for being what judges described as “a global leader in publishing and a trendsetter among brands with a foot still in the print world but looking with confidence into a digital future.”

They also received an award for Online Advertising Innovation.

Future Publishing’s N-Photo magazine won two categories, Social Media and Marketing Innovation and Consumer Magazine Innovator of the Year.

In an article on TheMediaBriefing, which runs the awards, Neil Thackray, awards judging committee chairman and Briefing Media co-founder said:

These awards represent the best of innovation in British Media.

And they illustrate how the industry is changing: the lines between media owner, technology company and agency are becoming blurred and the British Media Awards simply celebrate the best media ideas, brands and products, wherever they come from.

The full list of winners is below:

  • Social Media and Marketing Innovation: N-Photo, Future (Highly commended:Huffington Post UK)
  • Online Advertising Innovation: The Economist, for its Phillips campaign
  • Paid Content Innovation: Lloyds List Group, Informa Business Information
  • Most Innovative Technology for Media Owners: ScribbleLive
  • Consumer Magazine Innovator of the Year: N-Photo, Future (Highly commended: The Economist)
  • B2B Innovator of the year: Estates Gazette, Reed Business Information
  • Best Use of Mobile: British Journal of Photography, Incisive Media
  • Commercial Team of the Year: InSkin Media
  • Digital Media Innovator of the Year: InSkin Media (Highly commended: Huffington Post UK)
  • Media Innovator of the Year: Carla Buzasi, Huffington Post UK
  • Media Company of the Year: The Economist
  • Overall Media Innovation of the Year: InSkin Media
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Economist seeks to build relationships with 1m Facebook fans

The Economist has today announced that it has clocked up one million fans on Facebook.

The fans come from 180 countries, with the largest number living in the United States, followed by India, the UK, Pakistan and Canada, the Economist states in a release.

Last week Nick Blunden, global publisher, digital editions told the Guardian’s Changing Media Summit that “people want to belong and we can monetize that”.

It’s about building relationships on Facebook and monetizing outside.

On the subject of charging for access to content, he said that people will pay for the experience of “being informed”.

Today’s release states:

The Facebook community regularly discusses, debates, comments and share posts, with those regarding world leaders and international events generating the most responses. One of the most popular posts of all time focused on the Economist’s 2009 “The Man Who Screwed An Entire Country” cover and received over 130,000 likes in just a few days.

The Economist states that it “reaches over 3.5 million people through all of its social media properties, including 2.1 million individuals on Twitter and 400,000 users on Google+” and a “growing global circulation” (now 1.5 million including both print and digital), according to figures from the Audit Bureau of Circulation.

The news outlet is now asking readers how they consume the title’s content.

To mark the milestone, the publication has asked its Facebook community to tell or show how they consume Economist content. Fans have been posting their experiences and photos, which include reading indoors, outdoors, by the pool, floating in the dead sea, on tablets and even reading in diapers for one young adopter, aged 13 months.

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#paywalls12 – The Economist: ‘We have doubled content in two years’

February 23rd, 2012 | 1 Comment | Posted by in Paid-for content

“Just putting print online was never going to be enough” said Audra Martin, vice president of customer engagement at the Economist, at today’s Paywall Strategies conference.

And digital is driving production. “We had to up the amount and frequency we were publishing.

“We have doubled the content we have produced over last two years,” she said, with “blogs accounting for half of content”.

Martin explained how the Economist, which charges readers to use its apps and the majority of the content on its website, is growing its communities, not just paying subscribers.

One way is by focusing on social media optimisation. “We’ve got smart of how and when post things,” she said, with consideration given to different global audiences. “And it amplifies.”

And once people see the kind of content available, they will pay to access they will pay for it. “If they taste it, they will want more,” she said.

Despite recent digital successes and developments – with digital-only subscriptions topping 100,000 at the end of last year, 300,000 out of the Economist’s one million print subscribers using the Economist’s apps, and 70 per cent of subscribers expecting expect to be reading the publication digitally in two years – the magazine remains committed to print.

“We will continue to print the newspaper as long as people want to consume it,” she said.

“But we want to be ahead of of the game when people move from print to digital.”

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Economist launches US election web app

January 11th, 2012 | No Comments | Posted by in Mobile

The Economist has launched Electionism, an HTML5 web app for tablets, focusing on the US election.

Publishers will be interested to note the development of an app that works across a range of tablets, including the iPad, Galaxy Tab and Kindle Fire (yet to be released in the UK), and will also soon be available on the Blackberry PlayBook.

Rather than being downloaded from an app store, it is accessed by following a link in the tablet’s web browser.

Although designed for tablets, a simple version of the app works on mobile, presenting a Tumblr blog-style format (indeed, the app is “powered by Tumblr”).

This is the the Economist’s first foray into a web app that will work across several devices, unlike its range of apps native to Android and Apple’s iOS.

Electionism includes content from the Economist, CQ Roll Call and other noteworthy election reports from around the web.

Tom Standage, digital editor of the Economist, said in a release:

Electionism combines the Economist’s day-to-day opinion and commentary on the US elections, from our Webby-award-winning Democracy in America blog, with detailed on-the-ground coverage from CQ Roll Call and our picks of the best election coverage from elsewhere on the web, all wrapped up in a tablet-friendly format.

Nick Blunden, global managing director and publisher of the Economist online added:

It is extremely important to us that we provide our readers with not just commentary and analysis, but also the opportunity to discuss and debate the key issues. By building content sharing functionality through Facebook, Twitter and email into the Electionism app, we have provided readers with the ability to engage others in a conversation around the election.

Electionism was created by the Economist Group Media Lab, an internal product innovation group, and built in conjunction with its Toronto-based technology partner, Pressly.

  • Tom Standage, who is quoted in thus post, will be speaking at news:rewired, a conference for digital journalists organised by Journalism.co.uk. See the agenda, list of speakers and list of delegates. Tickets cost £130 +VAT and can be booked using the ticket page. More than 140 tickets have been sold. Book now to avoid disappointment.
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#followjourn – @tomstandage Tom Standage/digital editor

December 16th, 2011 | No Comments | Posted by in Recommended journalists

Who? Tom Standage

Where? Tom is digital editor at the Economist, where he oversees the website and other digital editions. He will be speaking at news:rewired – media in motion on paid-content models.

Twitter? @tomstandage

Just as we like to supply you with fresh and innovative tips, we are recommending journalists to follow online too. Recommended journalists can be from any sector of the industry: please send suggestions (you can nominate yourself) to rachel at journalism.co.uk; or to @journalismnews.

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The Economist’s future of news debate (and a nice example of online video)

December 16th, 2011 | No Comments | Posted by in Editors' pick, Multimedia


The Economist created a short video following a discussion earlier this year and online debate on “the future of news”.

It was first posted on YouTube in October but makes some good end-of-year viewing. It is also worth watching as a nice example of storytelling in online video.

The news industry debate put forward the motion that “this house believes that the internet is making journalism better, not worse”, with author, blogger and journalism professor at New York University Jay Rosen defending the motion and author, blogger and writer-in-residence at the University of California, Berkeley Nicholas Carr speaking against the motion.

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Economist launches World in 2012 iPad app

November 24th, 2011 | No Comments | Posted by in Magazines, Mobile

The Economist has today announced the release of an iPad version of “The World in 2012 from the Economist: Editor’s Highlights”, based on the annual magazine which features predictions, graphs and charts for the coming year.

In a release, the Economist said the app, which is sponsored by BMW, features “select articles from this year’s edition, videos from around the world and specially curated snapshots of people, events, landmarks and data are all included in the first-ever World in…highlights application.”

The featured articles focus on a variety of topics ranging from the areas of technology still up for grabs, the power of sharing and the change in China’s leadership.  The videos include an extract of an interview with Facebook’s Chief Operating Officer, Sheryl Sandberg, as well as interviews with people from New York, Beijing and London on the coming year.  The application also contains a feature on 12 people to watch in 2012, a month-by-month selection of events in 2012, a snapshot of 12 titbits to look out for in the year ahead and a collection of charts, graphs and data.

Daniel Franklin, editor of The World in 2012 said in the release:

This digital introduction makes it clear to new readers why the publication has become so popular over the past quarter century.

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The Economist’s Twitter followers click links, Al Jazeera’s retweet, study finds

August 5th, 2011 | 2 Comments | Posted by in Social media and blogging

A new study has looked at how six news sites’ Twitter followers engage and react to tweets. Twitter content publishing platform SocialFlow has assessed the Twitter audiences of Al-Jazeera English, BBC News, CNN, the Economist, Fox News and the New York Times.

The study is based on bit.ly and Twitter data from more than 20 million tweets posted by the seven million users who follow these accounts on Twitter.

It has revealed some interesting facts:

  • Engagement can be read in clicks. The Economist has a highly active and engaged audience in terms of both clicks per tweet and retweets per tweet, suggesting a high level of alignment between content posted and attention users are willing to provide.
  • Audiences differ in their willingness to consume and share information on Twitter. Al-Jazeera’s audience is the most active in terms of publishing and retweeting content on Twitter, while the Fox News audience generates substantially more clicks from its audience.
  • A large number of followers doesn’t necessarily translate into action. Despite being the largest account, the New York Times garners the fewest clicks per tweet when audience size is normalised and earns many fewer retweets when compared to accounts that are much smaller.
  • Timing and topical interest matter when seeking attention. By arranging audience tweets into topic maps, we were able to visualise the flow of attention between topics of interest, across the different audiences.

It is worth being aware that this is what SocialFlow does: it offers solutions to businesses wanting to maximise the effectiveness of their tweets by timing them to get the most reaction.

Click throughs

One of the points the study draws out is that where the Economist’s highly engaged Twitter audience clicks on links to the associated news article, Al Jazeera’s audience behaves differently. The study finds Al Jazeera English has the most retweets per tweet but followers are not necessarily clicking links – an all important goal for web publishers.

The takeaway for publishers is one of topics, network and timing, as the report states.

Knowing when an addressable audience is available and what topics they’d like to engage in is key to earning their attention.

The study also points out that a Twitter audience is measurable and this should be analysed and used “to inform content development strategies and marketing planning”.

While clicks bring immediate returns, retweets and other forms of audience participation raise trust and brand awareness, both imperatives for maintaining sustained growth. A high number of followers is not indicative of an engaged audience; a high click-through rate doesn’t necessarily yield other engagement metrics such as retweets and new followers.

By paying attention to long established demographics, collective audience behavior and the mercurial and fickle moment-to-moment signals, we step away from conjectures, generalisations, and assumptions, and leverage the audience itself in determining how best to interact.

SocialFlow has also created a Twitter visualisation looking at engagement with @AJEnglish. Topics have been mapped using over the period of an hour. The larger the topic node, the more it was discussed on Twitter during that hour. Click on the visualisation to download SocialFlow’s diagram as a PDF and explore it.

The full report is at this link

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Economist launches app into Android Market

August 2nd, 2011 | No Comments | Posted by in Magazines, Mobile, Traffic

The Economist officially launches its app for Android phones and tablets today (2 August).

The app was released to the Android Market last week and, according to the market, has been downloaded between 10,000 and 50,000 times in one week and rated more than 230 times averaging 3.6 stars. A press spokesperson for the Economist was unable to confirm or release download figures.

The new app follows in the footsteps of the magazine’s iPhone and iPad apps, which have seen 2.4 million downloads since they were launched in November.

“We now have almost 700,000 unique devices accessing the apps each month,” Oscar Grut, managing director, digital editions said in a release.

Speaking in June, Tom Standage, digital editor, said around half of those accessing content were paying subscribers.

As with all digital content, Android users will be able to read some articles for free but will need to pay for a subscription to receive all content. A weekly subscription allows users to receive the magazine by post, plus read content via the app and paywalled website, which is available from 9pm on a Thursday evening (5pm New York time), 12 hours before it is delivered through a subscriber’s letter box.

A single issue can be bought via the app for £3.99. The magazine cover price is £4.

Once downloaded, issues are stored on the user’s device and can be read when not connected to the internet. Every issue also includes a full audio edition.

The Android app, which operates on all Android phones and small and medium tablets running OS 2.x, was built by TigerSpike, which built iPad apps for the Economist, the Telegraph and Time Out.

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Economist launches World in Figures iPhone app

The Economist has launched an iPhone and iPod app based on its World in Figures book, which is published annually.

The World in Figures app, which costs 69 pence, has data on 190 countries.

It is of use to journalists who need to access country stats, and of interest to a much wider audience, despite some of the data being a little old.

The app includes ‘ranking topics’, with stats on daily newspapers per country and press freedom. Data – whether it be cinema visits, Oscar-winning films, aid donors, or stats on disease – can be shared by email or posted to Facebook.

  

There are also a series of trivia flashcards, which can also be shared by Twitter.

 

Last month, the Economist released figures to say its news iPhone and iPad apps had been downloaded two million times.

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