VG News - a unique multifunctional product
2020 Finalist

VG News - a unique multifunctional product

VG, Schibsted

Oslo, Norway

Category Best New Technology or Digital Product

Overview of this campaign

We made the bold statement that we wanted to create a product that was ahead of technology.

In the years to come smart speakers will probably play a huge part in people’s daily lives. To maintain VG’s position as the number one destination for news in Norway, we believe it is crucial to stay ahead of technology and provide news on platforms people use, or will use in the future.

Our key objective was to provide news on smart assistants.

Video journalists from VGTV were put to the task of making audio news for Google Home, in addition to our daily video production. By saying: «Hey Google - what’s the latest news from VG?» people got news updates on their smart assistant. 

However, the fact that Google Home still has very few users in Norway, all of our work proved to be very unsustainable. After making 2703 audio news updates, we had to rethink our process.

While making the audio news updates, VGTV had already experimented with videos that played automatically on the front page of VG.no. We decided to further develop this product. With smart screen Google Nest Hub launching in Norway in the spring of 2019, we wanted to provide news that would play on BOTH platforms.

By transforming our audio only news for Google Home into video news that works on multiple platforms we found a new and sustainable way to engage with our audience on platforms we believe will grow over time.

Our 1 minute news updates are served continuously throughout the day. VG News are made as videos with sound, but they are made so that they also work as sound alone or images alone.

At the same time it works as:
* A regular video
* A video without sound
* Audio alone.


Results for this campaign

By being creative and innovative we have succeeded in creating a unique multifunctional news product. The result is beyond expectations: We are providing news on smart assistants, which was our key objective. In addition, we have managed to develop a product that works on SEVEN different platforms - at the same time. Our reach has increased from just a couple of thousand to a total of 2.7 million daily users. By doing this we can keep experimenting and provide news on platforms we believe will grow over time.

Since one video journalist alone is responsible for the entire process of making VG News, our product has become extraordinary sustainable. With adjustments and product improvements our staff really enjoys making VG News.

In November 2019 VG News was launched as a news show on Snapchat, reaching even more young people. On average 150,000 youngsters watch our news on Snapchat every day, and some editions have been seen by almost 600,000. By being on Snapchat VG News now plays a huge part in reaching younger audiences.

During the development of VG News, other concepts emerged. For instance, we launched a concept called VG Explains. We explain complex news stories in a way that reaches a younger audience. One example is explaining Brexit with the graphical help of a Norwegian known cookie called Bixit. Just to crack things up. Luckily for us, the data showed that the audience agreed as well.

Since VG News also works without sound, we have successfully created a product for the future: public screens. Now we want to launch our products on subway and bus stops, trains, shopping malls ect++ In earlier days the VG logo was displayed everywhere out in the public. With the newspaper dying VG is not as visual in the public space anymore. By developing this unique multifunctional product - VG can be top of mind. 


Contact

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