In an age where there are more mobile devices than there are humans it is no surprise that mobile usage has drastically redefined the way that people engage with content online. For magazine publishers of all sizes it is fast becoming a necessity to have a mobile content marketing strategy in place so that you can increase audience development and ultimately create new streams of revenue for your business. However, going mobile involves more than just taking your desktop website and e-edition and scaling it down for mobile. To help you take the first step, here are 5 tips that will help you create an actionable mobile marketing plan for your magazine.
1. Understand what your readers are using mobile for
Before getting started it is important to have a clear understanding of your audience’s mobile habits. Third party tracking sites like Google Analytics or Ominture will help you measure reader behavior through their interaction with your digital properties, such as your website and online e-edition, and will show you a segmented breakdown of mobile vs desktop views. As of 2014, Americans are now spending more time consuming media and other content exclusively on mobile devices than on desktop.
It is becoming increasingly important that publishers respond to this demand by producing a digital edition of their magazine which has its content, format, and functionality completely optimised and enhanced to accomodate the changing reading habits of mobile users.
2. Plan long term
Now is the best time for publishers to review their current technologyand evaluate if system changes must be made to ensure a future-proof mobile strategy can be put into action. Mobile-first publishing solutions are gaining traction within the industry, with many publishers and marketers leading their efforts with their mobile e-edition. This does not mean that other platform audiences should be neglected, but instead must be factored into a strong, cohesive brand ecosystem. Publishers should be able to take their print content, break it down into its constituent elements (sections, articles, images, text, and other design elements) and repackage it in a way that works for each platform and device. Marketers will need to keep this ‘all-in-one’ publishing solution in mind when devising a mobile marketing strategy that is inclusive of all digital and print readers.
3. Leverage native mobile functionality
It is important to remember that your readers will engage with your magazine in fundamentally different ways when using different platforms. Since mobile readers are often ‘on the go’ your mobile edition must be practical and efficient at meeting the user requirements of your readers. By incorporating the native functionality of mobile devices into your publishing strategy, such as tap-to-call, and tap-for-directions, you will be able to increase audience development by giving your readers more value and will also allow you to engage with them on a more personal level.
SMS is a highly effective marketing tool that can be used to increase audience engagement with your mobile edition by notifying them when a new issue is available, accumulate a more comprehensive mailing list through promotional opt-ins, and encourage new readers to sign up with simple SMS-to-subscribe features. It is important to allow readers to personalise their experience with your magazine by offering multiple chanels to receive marketing and promotional material, for example SMS, email, both, or other. Other simple to implement mobile-friendly functionality includes adding a click-to-call or click-for-directions option to enhance the interactivity of your mobile content and offer extra incentive to advertisers.
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4. Tap into new advertising strategies
Publishers can benefit drastically from reevaluating the advertising strategy for their magazine to appeal to mobile users. Native advertising is quickly emerging as a highly lucrative and effective way for publishers to increase ad impressions on mobile through hyper-targeting and therefore giving readers more value. Since native ads fit into their surrounding editorial content in both form and function they will receive more attention and result in a less disruptive user experience. With 70% of people preferring to learn about products through content rather than more traditional advertising techniques, it pays off for publishers and marketers to consider this mobile-first ad strategy and have it planned out and under way in time for the launch of their magazine’s mobile edition.
5. Reimagine content creation
Up until recently most publishers have been creating digital replica versions of their print magazine for online. While replicating the print experience online in this way is highly effective for desktop reading, this will not translate well for small screen displays. The push to reimagine the digital magazine for mobile extends not only to its form, but also to the very content that you include. Keeping a close eye on your readers’ mobile behavior will allow marketers to evaluate if and what changes need to be made to your content for mobile. As a general observation, mobile audiences are more likely to skim read, so you will need to ensure your content engages them much more immediately to avoid drop off rates. Keep paragraphs and headlines succinct, and compensate with content-rich elements such as images and videos. Marketers should analyse which forms of content lead to more social media success by measuring likes and shares so that your content strategy can be continually strengthened.
As magazine publishers, your mobile edition can be your strongest marketing tool for generating new streams of revenue for your business. Make sure that you take advantage of all of the latest features in mobile publishing technology in order to leverage your content in the booming mobile space.