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Visual journalism helps BBC solve 3 audience challenges

24 November 2014 · By Amanda Farnsworth

At the BBC, we’ve brought together our TV graphic designers with our specialist multi-media journalists, online designers, and developers to form our visual journalism team. What we want to do is make the most of the talents and experience of each part of the team and together, help them to innovate where TV meets the Web.

We’ve won a lot of awards this year, so we’ve made a good start. But there’s still so much more we can do creatively.

Visual journalism can help with three particular challenges our audience presents us with:

  1. Distinctiveness: It can help us stand out in a world where we may be covering many of the same stories as our competitors.

  2. Modernity: Visual journalism — where we may use our virtual reality studio to put a correspondent on the sea floor, or create a game so our users can try to land the Philae lander on a comet themselves — shows our audience that we are a lively, innovative, modern media outfit.

  3. Understanding (or maybe that should have been first): They say a picture can tell a thousand words. The same can be true of visual journalism.


Our “How to Put a Human on Mars” project saw ...


Gannett’s full-service ad design group finds revenue in unexpected place

23 November 2014 · By Connie McGarrah

As Gannett Imaging and Ad Design Center approaches its 8th anniversary, it is taking the world of consolidated and outsourced ad production by storm. But the journey to today’s success has not been a clear, straight path.

With a team of more than 400 creative people located in Des Moines, Iowa; Indianapolis, Indiana; and Phoenix, Arizona, the division of Gannett Publishing Services was, in its infancy, a consolidation of photo toning services across Gannett. Economic pressures and outdated technology across the company were the driving force at that time. 

It didn’t take long to see the potential to become a profit center. And by 2008, GIADC was offering imaging services to non-Gannett properties. 

After the acquisition of a partnership with a major media chain, hopes were high. Savings was the buzzword of the year. Everyone needed relief, and they were there to provide it. 

The reality, however, is that only a handful of the 30-some sites owned by the new partner actually went live due to the increased use of automation for imaging work. A few more independent sites came on board, particularly when GIADC became a preferred supplier for PAGE Cooperative, but the real dollars were still elusive.

If they were going to become a true profit center and build revenue, it was back to the drawing board.

Meanwhile, between 2009 and 2010, GIADC took on the additional project of ...


Dallas Morning News sports app offers differentiation within market

19 November 2014 · By Mark Francescutti

“We want to build an app!”

That was the proclamation from editors of SportsDay — the sports staff of The Dallas Morning News — before we began a year-long process of building SportsDay TALK.

SportsDay TALK became one of the first digital products at the Morning News to turn a profit despite the roadblocks most newspapers face.

There were many downsides to building a sports app.

ESPN, Fox, CBS, and Yahoo already had great apps. SportsDay didn't know much about making them.

Those companies had spent millions making them stylish and bug free. SportsDay didn’t have six figures.

They had ...


Schibsted shares 4 key lessons from its private programmatic marketplace

16 November 2014 · By Mark Toner

Editor’s note: This is one of 11 case studies featured in INMA’s strategic report “Programmatic Advertising Opportunities for Publishers,” released in September.

Creating a private marketplace has minimised disruption to traditional online advertising and increased CPMs.

As it began exploring programmatic sales, Schibsted Media Group opted to create a private marketplace to ensure higher CPMs and “to not disrupt the regular business,” says Svein Eriksen, CEO of Schibsted Norge Salg (Schibsted Norway Sales).

Schibsted’s foray into programmatic began with separate efforts in Norway and Sweden in 2012.

“We used most of 2012 to work on the strategy and to talk to the customers, the agencies, and the rest of the market,” Eriksen says. “This was to ensure that our approach and ideas would work.”

Schibsted Norway Sales’ private marketplace is invitation-only, and “each of the clients has to be approved, Eriksen says. Combining the media group’s inventory into a single marketplace was necessary to ensure


Danish Publisher Network leverages audience data for programmatic revenue

13 November 2014 · By Mark Toner

Editor’s note: This is one of 11 case studies featured in INMA’s strategic report “Programmatic Advertising Opportunities for Publishers,” released in September.

An alliance of 11 Danish publishers has created a private marketplace that now accounts for 25% of overall digital programmatic revenue. Launched in January 2013, the Dansk Udgivernetværk (Danish Publisher Network) is handling all programmatic sales for the 11 publishers that reach 70% of the Danish population. 

DPN is an alliance of Jyllands-Posten, Ekstra Bladet, Politiken, Krak, Nordjyske, Politikens Lokalaviser, Den Store Danske, Jobzonen, Jyske Medier and Børsen. The goal of the alliance — which offers offers online inventory and audience data to agency trading desks through real-time bidding— is to bring together all major publishers in the market.

DPN offers advertisers advanced and unique first-party audience data and greater reach within a premium and brand-safe environment. Along with offering quality content, DPN aims to ...


Cox Media Group revamps digital strategy, starts with Atlanta Journal-Constitution

11 November 2014 · By Amy Chown

Cox Media Group unveiled a bold new look for its free newspaper sites this month, starting with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Each month, receives more than 15.5 million visits, making it the most powerful local digital brand in the Atlanta market and one of the strongest brands in Cox Media Group’s portfolio. The sleek new design helps readers connect with what’s happening in Atlanta right now.

It’s the latest move in Cox Media Group’s digital evolution to meet the needs of readers and advertisers. 

“This is not a simple redesign of an existing Web site; it’s part of a long-term ...


How Google sees its role in programmatic advertising partnerships with local media

10 November 2014 · By Mark Toner

News media fail, social media score in Scottish referendum

04 November 2014 · By Jim Chisholm

It was back in 1979, and, as a 22 year-old research manager, I was summoned to see The Editor. Towards the end of our conversation in his oak-panelled office, I naively plucked up the courage to ask: “Mr. MacKay, what is it like running Scotland’s national newspaper?”

“Run a newspaper?” he hollered. “I run a country!”

Move forward 35 years and Scotland remains united with the United Kingdom. After a hard fought referendum battle in September, 55% of Scots voters decided to maintain links with the U.K., with the promise for greater devolution.

It’s been an exhilarating experience, but for me after 20 years of studying and envisaging news media’s evolution, it has been fascinating to witness the media’s future be presented in my homeland as it’s people made its most important decision in 300 years.

Scots may be associated with whisky, kilts, bagpipes, and haggis, but we also boast the world’s highest per capita share of outstanding universities, and have been described as the “inventors of the modern world.”

Media players and positions

Scots used to boast that we read more newspapers than any other country on earth. That is no longer true. But, to my experience ...


Increased revenue prompts News Corp to take programmatic to next level

03 November 2014 · By Mark Toner

Editor’s note: This is one of 11 case studies featured in INMA’s strategic report “Programmatic Advertising Opportunities for Publishers,” released in September.

Cameron King calls News Corp Australia’s initial moves into real-time bidding around the beginning of the decade “an easy budget line for us.”

With Australia’s concentrated market insulating News Corp’s domestic sales from large ad marketplaces, the company focused first on automated sales of international advertising inventory.

Aside from reviewing participating advertisers to control ad quality, the process was deliberately “low-touch,” encompassing 15%-20% of traffic from international markets, according to King, the company’s commercial head of platforms and products. 

In 2012, News Corp introduced ...


Condé Nast’s programmatic strategy focuses on core advertisers, market

30 October 2014 · By Mark Toner

Editor’s note: This is one of 11 case studies featured in INMA’s strategic report “Programmatic Advertising Opportunities for Publishers,” released in September.

When Condé Nast became one of the first media companies to create a private exchange for programmatic advertising, it wasn’t a dramatic strategic shift for the Manhattan-based publisher of the New Yorker and other magazines. 

“We decided to approach the market like we approach any other market — with premium inventory and premium experiences,” says Alanna Gombert, Condé Nast’s senior director of programmatic and trading. “There’s no difference in price, because why would there be? At the end of the day, [programmatic] is a booking tool.” 

Condé Nast’s private exchange allowed the publisher to connect its premium inventory and brands with advertising partners in its core segments. It has continued this approach with ...


About this blog

The Ideas Blog captures the practical discussions and case studies of news media company to grow revenue, audience, and brand. These case studies are written by INMA members for INMA members. Begun in December 2012, this content previously resided in Ideas Magazine; for an archive of past case studies, click here.

Blog editor

Dawn McMullan is the editor of the Ideas Blog and senior editor for INMA. If you are an INMA member and would like to contribute a case study, please contact Dawn directly by clicking here.


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