FUSE Media Advisor Q&A: Bonnie Kintzer, Trusted Media Brands
Technology is constantly changing the publishing landscape. At FUSE Media Summit, Nov. 19-21 in Philadelphia, we’re inviting leading digital media executives to come together and address the latest tech challenges and opportunities – and to embrace new tools and strategies that can propel the industry forward.
Under Kintzer’s leadership, Trusted Media Brands has doubled its digital reach to more than 50 million monthly unique visitors and leveraged data to launch new consumer products for Taste of Home and The Family Handyman. In the following interview, Kintzer discusses the role technology has played in driving her organization's revenue growth and looks ahead to the media industry’s biggest emerging challenge.
Why did you join the advisory board for FUSE Media Summit?
I've worked in media for over 20 years and I have seen how technology has both helped and hurt the industry. I want to be a bigger part of making sure that technology does more of the former and less of the latter. That's where a conference like FUSE comes in. FUSE makes sure that the technology leaders in media know what's coming and how to stay ahead of it.
Why should industry peers gather to discuss technology strategy and solutions?
It is important to make sure we are on the same page when it comes to content re-distributors like Facebook and Google. We also need to work with the ever-growing programmatic space to ensure accountability for things like user tracking and malware. The more unified publishers can be, the stronger we can hold the entire supply chain accountable to deliver a better experience for our readers and advertisers.
How has Trusted Media Brands used technology to drive revenue growth?
Our content teams use data to determine the topic areas where our readers want deeper, richer information. Then, using our customized version of WordPress, which is now standard across all our sites, we test different partners and experiences using in-house tools to optimize revenue while keeping readers happy. This data also helps us point those readers to other content on our sites that they might like, which is good for our readers as well as our advertisers. And as we iterate, we gather more data, and that helps us further optimize. The size of our audiences, the time they spend with us, and our overall yield are all up big – a direct result of these technology efforts.
What is your approach to tech implementation in your organization?
Like most organizations, we practice Agile and right now we’re focused on ad tech and user experience. We also overhaul our site code regularly, with a heavy focus on SEO performance. When we think about technology implementation at Trusted Media Brands, we don’t deploy custom or third-party tech because it looks cool or it’s the shiny new thing that has the industry buzzing; we do it to serve our readers and our advertisers.
What emerging technologies do you think will have the biggest impact on the industry?
It’s not so much the emerging technologies that we see as the next big effect but the changing regulatory landscape. The new data-privacy laws regarding user tracking will have a large-scale impact on everything from MarTech to analytics to how we count non-logged-in repeat visitors. Between the individual state laws, along with the ITP updates from Apple’s Safari, additional overhead will be required to adhere to these new guidelines, and that’s going to have an impact on Trusted Media Brands, as well as the rest of the media industry.
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