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Project Improved News Density
2024 Finalist

Project Improved News Density

NTM

Uppsala, Sweden

Category Product Development

Media associated with this campaign

Overview of this campaign

Journalism is core of our local news business. But to get our articles read and videos seen demands a lot of the digital distribution - the quality of product. And even though the journalism in itself is the most valuable asset a news company has, it is worthless if the product is no good. To improve on this we at the swedish local media conglomerate NTM realised we needed to take a lot of measures on product during 2023.

Our customers are more and more taking part of our journalism in mobile devices. 80 percent of traffic on our 18 web sites was on mobile last year. But still a lot of measures we hade taken recent years were focused on desktop. So we needed to focus on mobile first, for real this time.

When overseeing our product we could see a strong emphasis on advertising in the top two screens on mobile/app. And our ”top story” was actually not even visible in first screen on mobile/app. Over all our first screen was crowded by a lot of different messages, login, e-shop, navigation bar, and an editorial solution with many small headlines on both important and not so important news, stacked on top of each other.

We were also lacking some basic features that subscribers could and should demand from a news outlet of 2023. For instance all our articles looked the same, regardless of wheter it is a short notice on a car accident or a thorough investigative story that took weeks to put together. And our really super local stories from smaller cities tended to be drowned on the front page by more imortant bigger news from bigger cities in our areas.

On top of all of this: an initial initiative to redesign the product had been made during spring that was not really well anchored in all departments, and had to be stopped just before launch.

In short: we had quite a big challenge to handle last year.

 


Results for this campaign

In 2023 our company decided to enhance focus on internal cultural change. ”One NTM” has been a leading quote in the work on coming closer together between departments. It has been important to be able to ”Fight and unite” and not be stopped or slowed down by different opinions from different departments. This kind of thinking became the basics for product development in 2023.

We put together a small team with one representative from editorial and one from advertising, together with three people from tech department. The team got a strong mandate in implementing a swift change in product.

This workflow was very efficcient, and during second half of 2023 we did a lot of small changes on our product. We have tried to not aim for a BIG BANG but instead launch smaller changes continuously.

Under the summary name ”Improved news density” we have launched a new front page design. After constructive discussions (fight and unite within the team) we decided to rearrange first screen, with greater emphasis on the biggest story at the moment, displayed in top. Navigation moved to the bottom, more intuitive and closer to the users thumb on mobile, we use the same functonality on both apps and mobile. We decreased the number of options in the menu to three: Home, Latest news and menu/search. (This more direct and clear display of Latest news-section gave us a direct uplift of 100% in page views on that section) All of this was done in four weeks, with the aim to increase the news density of the product.

Throughout the year we also made many different iterations to the product to improve customer experience. Please see attached pdf for a closer description on all iterations being made – and the improvement on exact results.


Contact

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