A Defragmentation of the Fragmentation of Content
RSS is bigger than you think.
"RSS is growing faster than social networking," Flitter says. He points to a recent Neilsen study showing the percentage of Internet audiences consuming content through RSS feeds -- even if they don't realize that's what it is called -- has grown tremendously in the past few years. According to a recent Neilsen/NetRatings study, five percent of Internet consumers obtained their Web content through feeds in 2005. Today, between 43 and 56 percent do. "You have to embrace the distribution model," Flitter says. "It is here to stay, and it's growing."
There's going to be economic incentives to offering feeds of your content to subscribers.
"One simple model is to insert an ad into the stream itself," Flitter says. He says he's currently working with publishing clients to determine how to discover more financially significant ways for offering content to subscribers. That is the challenge that awaits RSS for the coming year, according to Flitter.
"What's the ROI of RSS, and how is it affecting my site traffic?" he says clients are asking now that RSS has become part of their model since being introduced several years ago. "That's where we're going next. We're sitting down and talking to publishers. We're looking into how to use this data to create a bigger impact."
Look at the data collected from your site visitors to help offer more recommendations.
By understanding your consumers, you'll be able to offer more of what they want to entice them to click through to your site. Flitter says publishers are constantly asking: "I have a lot of information about users. How can I use this data for recommendations to help drive users to content deeper into my site?" Dissecting the metadata collected from users is key in personalizing content so that you can provide your user with additional stories in your archives that will interest them, he says.
Your brand is still very powerful.
"The brand carries a lot of weight," Flitter says. "People are still making emotional connections with that brand." Flitter says consumers will seek those trusted names to help in the next phase of content consumption. Favored brands are looked at specifically for what they specialize in. Flitter says it's not odd for someone to have a personal page created from all different media where a subscriber can read New York Times news, Sports Illustrated sports and E! Online entertainment. "Consumers are taking bits and pieces from here and there," Flitter says. "Publishers need to be aware of that."