How Real-Time Analytics Are Giving Agile Publishers an Unfair Advantage

By NativeAI / May 8, 2018

2017 was a big year for news.

Social movements such as #MeToo, the first full year of the Trump presidency, friction with North Korea, and a total solar eclipse were some of the top stories.

With the flow of breaking news never ceasing, journalists are in need of constant insights about trending topics. Worldwide, readers are hungry for accurate, high-quality journalism to stay informed. However, when it comes to delivering timely stories, many publishers still stand in their own way. According to a 2015 study from Forrester, despite 62% of major publishers claiming that real-time data increased their revenue, only 27% actually use real-time analytics.

Why only 27%?

When there's promise of improved revenue and engagement, 73% of publishers neglect to use this gold-mine of information. And, this is great news for those who do.

The Value of Real-Time Analytics for Publishers

As a publisher, you need data about your audience. Otherwise, you wouldn't know which stories to break, what channels to utilize, or what topics to cover. But, what kind of data do you actually track, and what purpose does it serve?

Often, publishers use data from traditional analytics platforms. Google Analytics, or other similar tools, can accumulate a ton of useful data about your audience. Then, given the sheer volume of the information, a lot of publishers don't do anything with it.

Nearly 60% of large publishers struggle to use their data.

Meanwhile, 38% of smaller publishers are also facing challenges in consolidating data. There are so many channels and sources for data, editorial teams are struggling to put it all together.

This kind of analysis paralysis can seriously prevent growth. If this is you, it's definitely time to invest in a data analytics platform. A reliable platform can help your team stay agile, by providing one source for consistently accurate data about your audience.

Getting Value from a Real-Time Dashboard

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Keeping track of what is happening on your site right now is key for digital publishers. Being able to instantly compare and contrast performance against the typical averages reveals anomalies and hot topics that can be promoted to specific channels.

When you can watch as interests and stories drive engagement, you can easily find patterns. These patterns reveal areas of potential to build on high levels of engagement, and promote the right stories to the right audiences.

Analysis of Audience Interests

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Every year, techies eagerly await for Apple's big keynote. At the event, Apple insiders share their latest announcements and technology. Let's say you cover tech. There's a huge opportunity to write articles, posts, and create videos about the keynote, as well as any topics covered during it, right?

But there's a time limit to that data. You need to deliver the right content as soon as you can.

With apple, they could make key announcements on a variety of products or software, and many times, make those announcements the same day. Your audience may be interested more in the updates to the MacBook line, or they could be more interested in the individual features of a new iPhone update.

Having a real-time insight into the interests of your audience can reveal those subtopics that are driving the most engagement. This allows publishers to allocate resources to those granular details rather than covering topics in general and losing that personalized experience.

Intelligence About Interests

Adam Ellis, a former contributor to Buzzfeed, made headlines when he started describing his experiences with the paranormal. Ellis turned the story about a small ghost child, called Dear David into a series of articles, with the illustrator frequently providing drawings, photography, video, and descriptions of his encounters with the spirit.

With the use of a real-time analytics platform, Buzzfeed could monitor the development of the Dear Davidstory. In one place, publishers could see the story was performing well on Facebook and Twitter, and track its virality across publications such as Bustle, Hello Giggles, and The Sun.

As the interest for the Dear David story wore off, a real-time analytics dashboard reflected the shift. Buzzfeed could respond instantly to ensure their audience remained engaged. All of the easily accessible information available on a platform such as NativeAI, could provide Buzzfeed with all of these insights.

In the future, learnings from the Dear David story could be used to target the same audience with similar tales. You can easily replicate this approach using a real-time analytics dashboard, and ensure that readers never lose interest in your topics.

Quality of Engagement

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In the Winter of 2014, the release of crude 4-methylcyclohexanemethanol (MCHM) into the Elk River was an epidemic. The entire area surrounding Charleston, West Virginia was affected, leaving thousands without water. It was a huge story, and West Virginia Public Broadcasting reporter Ashton Marra used Twitter to live-tweet updates about the chemical spill to the publication's anxious audience.

In this instance, Marra could use a real-time analytics dashboard to gauge the engagement of their Twitter audience. With Native AI, publishers can easily measure engagement with the Engagement Quality (EQ) metric, which provides insights-at-a-glance about engagement by various traffic channels.

Wouldn't it be valuable to see this?

Your team wouldn't spend unnecessary time on channels that don't perform, and can quickly pivot when necessary to produce more engaging content.

Getting Started With Real-Time Analytics Dashboards

If you're interested in getting more value from real-time analytics, a platform such as NativeAI is an exceptional solution. Our real-time analytics platform can provide the data you need to inform optimization, drive audience engagement strategies, and talk about the topics readers actually care about. Billboard, Thomson Reuters, and Roll Call are already using NativeAI to get more meaningful insights about audience behavior and content preferences.

It's easy to get started with NativeAI. After installing the tracking code, you can start watching the real-time dashboard for your publication. Check out our demo to learn more. How to Extract Actionable Publishing Insights From Deep Audience Data

Written by NativeAI / May 8, 2018