JournalismNext (11): Building a digital audience for news

9 03 2011

Track all that you publish

Productivity is a key factor for managers when tracking a reporters’ ability to break news,  publish at a good rate, and gain an audience.

What to track:

  • Total news stories per day
  • News stories by topic or section
  • Total blog posts per day
  • Blog posts by specific blog
  • Slide shows per week
  • Video stories per week
  • Podcasts or other audio stories
  • News updates
  • Breaking news e-mail alerts
  • SMS or other mobile news alerts
  • E-mail newsletters that are not sent automatically
  • Twitter, Facebook or other social network posts
  • User-generated content

A web-based spreadsheet is the best way to track all of these.

Track your audience

  • Use web analytics software

Wed analytics: The software and mechanisms to track web site traffic

Identify key data points

  • Pageviews
  • Visits and unique visitors compared
  • Engagement and referrers

Search engine optimization

  • Spiders and robots
  • Indexing
  • Queries

Use SEO to grow your audience

  • Content is king
  • Linking is queen

Make sure your links make sense

  • Title tags
  • HTML meta tags

Make good headlines better

  1. Keywords, keywords, keywords
  2. Use conversational language
  3. Don’t be afraid to inject a little attitude

Target specific social media distribution channels

  • Blogs
  • Flickr, YouTube, etc.
  • Twitter, Facebook, MySpace, etc.
  • Digg, reddit, Fark, StumbleUpon, etc.



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