During the “Brainsnack” sessions on the first day of the 2014 INMA World Congress, Espen Egil Hansen discussed the importance of communication and feedback with a news readership following.

Hansen, editor at Aftenposten in Norway, realised he had missed an integral part of his career by not being a paperboy because receiving feedback from newspaper readers was a big part of their job.

After more than 200 meetings with readers, Aftenposten collected thousands of honest pieces of feedback.

“They deliver too much paper,” one woman responded. “There is too much. I don’t need to know.”

After going over the feedback, Aftenposten launched a completely fresh newspaper. The slogan for news transitioned from “nice to know” to “must know.”   

Hansen noted the shift to communicating with the readership has lead to market growth: “We used to be four times slower than our competitors. Now we are four times faster.”

Moving forward, Hansen said Aftenposten will be a continued push to understand readers and make sure the quality of the content is exactly where it needs to be.

In conjunction with those, it’s about new parts and moving those forward quickly: “It’s of course all about speed and innovation,” Hansen said.