Publishing in a Fragmented Online World
To accomplish this, think of your Web site as your primary publishing location. If done correctly, you only need to publish on your site, then syndicate out your content or headlines through all of the other channels:
• Your Web site is always current for people visiting via a computer.
• Your mobile Web site is automatically updated for people visiting via an iPhone, Blackberry, etc.
• Your latest content is automatically fed into your RSS feed, which then automatically updates anyone who is subscribed to it with iGoogle, My Yahoo or any other RSS reader.
• Your Twitter feed and Facebook status are automatically updated with your latest content because they're synced to your RSS feed. (You've made it easy for the reader to find your RSS feed, and Twitter and Facebook accounts, right?)
• Your e-mail alerts get sent out with your latest content pointing people back to your site. (You formatted your e-mail to be easily readable on both a computer and a mobile device, right?)
One of the best sites that I've seen employ all of these tactics is Mashable. Visit it sometime and see how its Web site (Mashable.com), mobile edition (m.Mashable.com), Twitter page (Twitter.com/mashable) and Facebook wall (Facebook.com/mashable) all are identical. And with more than 1.6 million Twitter followers, 52,000 Facebook fans and 303,000 RSS subscribers, something must be working right.
You get the idea. No matter how your audience wants to access your content, provide a way for them to get it, and syndicate your content out identically through all of those distribution channels. Your reach is now a combination of your Web traffic, mobile readers, e-mail subscribers, RSS subscribers, Twitter followers, Facebook fans, etc. Your readers may be using a myriad of methods to get your content, but you've aggregated it all into a single audience. Of course, your content distribution is just the first step in the battle—you still need to build an audience in these channels, and build your revenue streams to leverage all of these channels, but this is the first step in creating a viable publishing model that works in an increasingly fragmented online world. PE