Home » Event news, Featured Posts

LIVE: Session 3B – Multiplatform strategies

Submitted by on February 3, 2012 – 2:59 pm | 2,073 views

News outlets rarely publish on one platform in today’s media market and so when it comes to forming a publishing strategy they need to be aware of the opportunities of each platform, from smartphone and iPad to the Kindle and desktop computer screen. This session will look at the importance of building an effective multiplatform strategy and making the best of content across different devices.

With: Mike Goldsmith, editor-in-chief of iPad and tablet editions, Future Publishing; Douglas Arellanes, technologist, consultant and the director of clients and services, Sourcefabric; Ron Diorio, vice-president of product and community development, Economist.com; and Lucia Adams, web development editor, the Times.


And once you go multiplatform, there are new readers waiting for you.


Interactive editions are “sexy, expensive and the future!”

But at the moment they’re difficult for both art editors and advertising – no one’s really done it yet. Goldsmith says start with a digital replica and begin that conversation with your reader before developing interactive…


Interactive editions are developer-friendly and perform well for conversion. They’re great for big online brands that already produce lots of interactive and multimedia.


Digital replicas, Goldsmith concludes, are a great first entry into multiplatform strategy but they are NOT a long-term solution for the biggest brands.

Instead, there are interactive editions for a very sexy user experience!


He says, unfortunately, digital replicas are still seen as a poor relation – although tablets are changing that. They’ve started to really make sense over the last year.


Digital newsstands are a GOOD thing for magazine publishers, he says.

Digital replicas look beautiful – very inportant for consumer magazines – and encourage people to actually pay for content.


And last but not least, we have Mike Goldsmith from Future Publishing…


They use the weekly print edition to go in depth into the background to the stories they’re covering as they break daily online.


He cites an amazing case study: the editors of Basel Zeitung walked out when the paper was sold to a right wing politician. Swiss citizens came out in support of the editors, who then decided to set up their own democratic community paper – helped by Sourcefabric.

The new organisation sees itself as a news website which happens to put out a print edition – not the other way round.

Open source really helped them as a startup because they didn’t have to pay for a license for software.


Sourcefabric help smaller and less wealthy newsrooms to “punch above their weight”. Often this is achieved using “the least sexy side” of online journalism – manipulating the back end of websites, etc. They put content first and build the workflow around it. That’s more important than being limited to specific platforms – “must be ready for anything!”


Douglas Arellanes from NGO Sourcefabric has taken to the stage… He’s here to tell us about his efforts to ‘open source the newsroom’


The Times is proud to be Angry Birds in downloads!


Adams thinks launching a largely static newspaper app in an age of rolling news was a bold move. She thinks readers like a break from reading online where they’re continually asked to make decisions about what and how they read.


Now we’ve got Lucia Adams, web development editor at the Times. She’s talking about the plunge behind the paywall and helping to launch the iPad in the UK.


In other words, multiplatform strategy must take into account and be part of the organisation’s “business goals”


The Economist uses tablet versions to offer tasters of Economist books which in turn may entice people to read the magazine. Multiplatform strategy is all about creating continuity but also using difference in media to create hook-ins.


The Economist already uses data to produce books such as ‘The World in Figures’ and ‘Which MBA?’ They are also interactive data books, like apps – not a passive reading experience.


They’re looking at ways to socialise their audio. iTunes is too much of a ‘closed garden’ he says – not enough incentive to share and interact.

The Economist also want to take data from the magazine and turn it into apps that readers can use.



Our first speaker is Ron Diorio from the Economist group. Did you know they produce an audio book version of the Economist every week?! They also use Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Tumblr…


Peter Clifton’s first experience of multiplatform strategy? Ceefax at the BBC! How far we’ve come…


We’re about to kick off on multiplatform strategy. Hope the wifi holds out!

Related posts

Tags: , , , ,