Why recirculation should be one of your KPIs and how to increase it, with takeaways from The Independent

Recirculation: a real-time metric that compares the number of visitors to a page to the number of users who move from that content to another page.

Why is recirculation a valuable KPI?

Recirculation is more valuable to your business than acquiring new visitors. Not only is acquisition becoming increasingly difficult and costly, viewing more pages on each visit means higher engagement, loyalty and propensity to subscribe, all of which directly correlate to revenue.

According to Chartbeat, there are 3 things that make up the anatomy of a recirculation strategy:

  • Show off the depth and quality of your content, so every reader knows that you have more than just the great article they clicked on
  • Given the amount of readers that come from external platforms like Google and Facebook, almost all of which are landing on an article rather than your homepage, a clear recirculation strategy can push those readers further down the loyalty journey
  • Most publishers rely on programmatic widgets to surface related stories, but related links — chosen by editors and placed at strategic points in the story — are an effective way to encourage deeper visits. Especially on mobile, where more widgets appear at the bottom of the page (where no readers will see them)

The Independent, mastering the recirculation game

Just a single article contains 5 recirculation techniques for you to steal:

1. Backlinks on keywords

Learn to link: add backlinks on keywords, leading to other articles or content topics:

Best practice: differentiate these linked words and phrases from other text by placing them in another color or underlining them. This practice should be consistent across your site so users recognize where to click.

But don’t forget to check your average scroll depth for optimal click potential:

Chartbeat research has found that the majority of clicks happen just above the digital fold, at page depths of 400 to 600 pixels (as indicated below), so it’s important to optimize your articles for those related links.

Discover Chartbeat’s other research on optimal article length

2. An interactive, Instagram story style slide-show shares 6 top articles

💡 Images with links generate 63% more clicks than those of text-only (data from Lenfest Institute) and, considering the amount of time your audience spends on social media, taking inspiration from there to increase engagement can only prove beneficial.

The key to good recirculation is through interactivity – engaging visitors in a positive way to make suggested articles feel personal and non-intrusive, being careful to cater to the reader’s interests as well as your own.

3. Personalized recommendations based on the content topic

This is more valuable than recommending content at the end of the article as Average Scroll Depth metrics will likely reveal that a large percentage of your audience don’t read until the end.

4. ‘Most popular’ content recommendations at the side of the page

💡 Generic wording (e.g. “Related Stories”) generates higher CTRs than more complex wording (e.g. “What Else People Can Read on This Topic”) according to data from the Center for Media Engagement. Note how all of these examples from The Independent involve phrases with a maximum of 2 words.

What’s more, inviting readers to discover your most popular articles allows them to feel part of a shared conversation, being ‘in the know’ by reading the articles that others are reading. This was Netflix’s thought process behind the “Top 10 in [insert your country]” feature.

5. At the end, a small “More about” text offering links to key topics featured in the article

A final chance to lead your user on to another article, however don’t bet on all readers reaching this point.

Don’t recirculate without thinking

Poor recirculation can have more of a negative than positive impact on engagement, so don’t go overboard and make sure to consider your recirculation tactics carefully.

For The Independent, these 5 strategies were all employed in a single article. Of course, recirculation is valuable, but so is a pleasant, engaging user experience. If there are too many distractions or frustrating features that prevent the reader from being able to consume the article ‘in peace’, then recirculation efforts will be wasted and you may even push your reader away. This is especially true for websites that depend on advertising (an additional distraction for readers), or for users visiting on mobile devices where the screen is smaller.

You should also aim to make the most out of your content resources for recirculation:

  • Surface popular content that are a dead end for readers – these represent your best opportunities to drive recirculation
  • Segment traffic and tailor your recirculation strategy based on source, user interests or device used
  • Leverage the Heads Up Display. This helps you know if the reason why readers are leaving the page is because of another story on your website
  • Use historical engagement data to find good potential recircultation links


This article was originally published by The Audiencers. The Audiencers is a B2B publication by Poool, The Membership and Subscription Suite, a simple, all-in-one platform for digital content producers to convert, manage and retain their members and subscribers. Find out more on poool.tech or book a free demo with their team.

Engagement strategy benchmarks for digital content producers

There is a direct correlation between engagement and revenue – as a user becomes increasingly engaged in your content, they yield gradually more revenue to your business:

  • More page views for advertising revenue
  • More likely to create a free account, meaning you can charge more for targeted ad spots
  • Higher propensity to subscribe in the future
  • Potential to become a brand advocate who recommends you to others

Engagement is therefore essential for any publisher to track and seek to develop throughout the user journey, moving users from Volatiles (only visiting your site an average of once per month) to Fans (who visit 19+ times a month) and later subscribers.

Take inspiration from some of the most successful publishers in the business on how they engage audiences:

Best practices for increasing engagement:

  • Form habits through regularity: e.g. newsletters sent at the same time every day to either form a new habit or fit into an existing one (such as the commute to work or a morning coffee)
  • Balance frustration with engagement to increase the value of your users. Engagement is great, but you also need to monetize your content!
  • Employ strategies that encourage recirculation so that users remain on your site
  • Offer as much personalization as possible (such as for newsletters , push notifications, ect) to make sure users are only getting content that interests and engages them rather than frustrates
  • Provide value in exchange for conversion steps – for instance, registered users could be offered additional UX features, exclusive content, a lighter ad experience, etc
  • Interactive content is your new best friend! Engaging users with games, quizzes or personality tests will help to keep them on page for longer and coming more frequently, especially if there’s something to be gained from it (such as a discount, especially if you’re a brand publisher)

This article was originally published by The Audiencers. The Audiencers is a B2B publication by Poool, The Membership and Subscription Suite, a simple, all-in-one platform for digital content producers to convert, manage and retain their members and subscribers. Find out more on poool.tech or book a free demo with their team.

78% of consumers are loyal to brands that treat them as individuals

It’s very easy for publishers to lose sight of the fact that the readers who consume the content they produce are, in fact, individuals.

As much as publishers want to profile their readers and establish common themes or pain points that resonate with their collective tastes and interests, it’s important never to lose sight of the fact that each reader is his or her own individual.

Publishers can’t allow themselves to lose sight of those facts while collecting audience data in an effort to stimulate audience-growth strategies. Everyone wants to feel like they’re valued and that a publisher offers a user experience that’s unique to their specific preferences.

A reader who feels valued and appreciated through personalised content recommendations is far more likely to become brand loyal, which is the pathway to earning subscription revenue from loyal readers.

Majority of readers reward brands earning their loyalty

Here are some helpful facts to paint a clearer picture: According to the 2022 Digital Consumer Trends Index, as many as 78% of consumers admit to having a favourite brand because that brand rewards them for their loyalty. This could be expressed in the form of discounted subscription rates or a free month of access to premium content.

Additionally, 74% of those same consumers prefer brands that treat them as individuals. It further validates the point that every person has unique tastes and preferences. When a reader visits a Web site to engage with new content, they want to believe the content was created specifically for them. They want to feel as if the entire user experience is built to appeal to their unique interests.

Readers provide plenty of incentive for publishers to earn their loyalty. More than 70% of readers say their favourite brand is a business striving to build a relationship with them. Another 64% say their favourite brand rewards their loyalty with surprise benefits, and 58% cite their favourite brand as the one that treats them like a VIP.

Everyone wants to feel like they’re special. Publishers that know how to create those feelings among their readers earn that invaluable brand loyalty.

First-party data shines a light on how to personalise content

Here’s the truth: 90% of readers respond positively to personalised experiences. As publishers, it’s essential to speak to individual readers using messaging that appeals to their interests. It’s through this approach that publishers show the humanity behind their brand identities, effectively communicating as one individual to another.

That personalised engagement and the ability to boost reader loyalty is created through first-party data. First-party data enables publishers to learn specific details about individual buyers and monitor any change in those behaviours over time. Publishers use these insights to build rich audience profiles that develop behavioural patterns of their most avid readers.

A data-driven content strategy prioritises personalisation

Using these audience profiles, content creators produce highly personalised content across the entire Web site. Audience segmentation is one of the building blocks of a content strategy that’s informed by behavioural data.

Once you begin segmenting your readers, you can go a step further and analyse where in the subscription journey different types of readers happen to fall. Segment readers as new visitors, known readers, and subscribed loyalists to uncover richer details of how people respond to your content.

Using an audience insights solution, all of this data can be pulled into a dashboard that your creative team can review at their convenience. Creators can review the journeys taken by current subscribers to understand what types of content converted them into brand loyal readers.

With those insights in hand, a data-driven content strategy can flourish and ultimately guide more readers to cross that threshold into the realm of becoming loyal subscribers.

Profile readers, build loyalty, boost subscriptions

Rich audience profiles tell creators how individual readers will respond to freshly created content. Using those insights, your creative team can double down on creating the types of stories that foster greater reader engagement. By relying on first-party data to direct the content strategy, you successfully create those personalised experiences that foster reader loyalty.

As data-driven content strategies develop over time, it’s important to never lose sight of the fact that the audiences you depend on for first-party data, helpful insights, and subscription revenue are all made up of individuals.

Individual readers have their own tastes and preferences, but it’s incumbent on publishers to learn about those interests so readers are incentivised to provide more first-party data or, as they become fully brand loyal, subscription revenue.

This blog was originally published by INMA

From community to reader revenue: lessons to learn from The Independent and Reach PLC

In its most simplest form, there are 2 steps to convert audiences into revenue:

  1. Engagement – unlocking the revenue potential of your audience
  2. Conversion – activating this potential to gradually increase revenue

The question then turns to exactly how this can be achieved.

For Mark Zohar, President and CEO at Viafoura, one of the most effective strategies involves building a community of increasingly more engaged and loyal users, whilst continuously moving them through a funnel of value exchanges and direct interactions to increase revenue.

Why should publishers build a community?

When audiences aren’t on your site, they’re spending a great deal of time on social media, growing accustomed to certain experiences and features that keep them coming back for more. In particular, these users feel part of a community. They can…

  • Interact with content
  • Comment
  • See other user’s opinions and contributions
  • Join events
  • Like and share content
  • Follow topics and authors that match their interests

These experiences have become user expectations, making traditional digital publisher sites seem passive with very little direct interaction.

As Mark puts it, we’re social beings who want to react and have human experiences – and it’s this that makes community so powerful.

“Publishers need to build a bridge between user expectations and experiences on publisher’s sites.” 

Another important reason why publishers should build a community is because content is a commodity – it’s easy to find any content at any time, especially for big news stories.

Community, on the other hand, is not a commodity. It’s an asset. Something that feeds into your brand value, that a user will come back for and that will make you different from other publishers producing similar content.

How engaging your community will drive value

All publishers with a reader revenue strategy aim to register or subscribe their audience. The problem, however, is when they try to go from 0 to 100 – from unengaged to a loyal subscriber.

Mark compares it to dating – you wouldn’t immediately ask someone to marry you (unless maybe if you’re on ‘Married at first sight’!), you’d ask them to dinner first.

Community helps to provide these intermediary steps, building engagement before trying to get value from your audience.

I.e. Community-led conversion.

For Reach PLC, this involves a 4-step model: Discover, Engage, Connect & Commit.

The key here, according to Mark, is to ungate the community but lock the content, reserving it for registered members or subscribers only. Readers will see the comments and feedback, building enough intrigue and interest to make them want to unlock the article.

Their ‘In Your Area’ postcode services & community, for instance, have led to 3 million registered users and a 35% increase in page-views per visitor since 2019.

On Reach’s “Devon Live” brand, commenting is reserved for registered users only, with messaging framing the action as a conversation that a reader can either be excluded or included in (“join”).

I’d add here that it’s also essential to highlight that registration is free. Although it benefits both you and the reader, it won’t cost them a penny and can be a brilliant way to monetize the large portion of your audience who may never pay to subscribe.

The Independent is another publisher who has made the most of community to register users, increasing engagement and collecting first-party data. To achieve this, they’ve put the focus on their audience, understanding and engaging with them in various forms across the site:

  • Q&A sessions with online experts covering a range of topics
  • Connecting journalists with their readers
  • Personalization features, such as the ability to follow topics, comment on articles and automated personalization based on data

Many of these community experiences are reserved for registered members who have proven to be 11x more engaged than anonymous users. 

And the funnel doesn’t stop there. Even after creating an account, registered users may still be blocked when trying to access premium features, such as bookmarking content, which are reserved for paying subscribers.

These conversion steps gradually move users through a funnel, collecting first-party data, increasing engagement and, importantly, revenue.

Subscribers have proven to be 62x more engaged than anonymous visitors

Best practices for building & gaining value from community

1) Reward your best contributors for their loyalty and participation

“Acquiring a new customer can cost five times more than retaining an existing one, whilst increasing customer retention by just 5% can increase profits from 25-95%”.

Retention should therefore be a priority, and rewarding highly engaged community members can play a valuable role in ensuring these users keep coming back.

  • Exclusive access for highly engaged users
  • Social proof – provide them with a subscriber badge or ‘super engaged user’ tag by their name (think of Twitter’s blue tick system)
  • Referral bonus/reward for inviting a new user to join the community
  • Feature their comments somewhere publicly, giving them a sense of fame
  • Reply to these users, establishing a more direct relationship with your publication

2) Highlight the best of your community

The benefits of this are two fold:

Firstly, you forefront the best comments to entice non-members to unlock content and comment so as to not miss out on this conversation. Any comments that add insight but also open up the discussion are particularly valuable here.

Secondly, you give the writers of these featured comments a sense of fame and inclusion as they’re placed directly below the article, encouraging them to comment more frequently.

3) Think bigger than just comments

As Mark put it, you can’t just slap on a comment section and hope for the best. You have to develop a whole community experience from the moment a user lands on your site and do so through a variety of formats.

Some of the most successful community-building techniques involve direct interaction between the newsroom and your audience. This could be as simple as journalists leaving an open ended question to users once a week, but it’s a small investment that your newsroom has to make to develop a strong, loyal community that brings business value.

4) Once you’ve collected data, put it to use

Identifying interests, propensities, etc is great, but this needs to circle back to improve the experience offered to users. Even personalizing a user’s home screen or content recommendations can have a big impact on engagement and revenue.

5) Moderation is crucial

Investing in a solution, whether AI or human, is the only way to ensure that your community is moderated enough to keep control whilst also allowing for free reign.

Mark recommends creating community guidelines and finding a solution that allows you to ban someone entirely, ghost ban someone (the user doesn’t know they’re banned – they can still comment, but no one else will see it) or even give some community members moderation status, gaining value from these users and increasing their loyalty as they feel more involved in the community.

Thank you to Mark Zohar, President and CEO at Viafoura, for speaking to me about this topic!

This article was originally published by The Audiencers. The Audiencers is a B2B publication by Poool, The Membership and Subscription Suite, a simple, all-in-one platform for digital content producers to convert, manage and retain their members and subscribers. Find out more on poool.tech or book a free demo with their team.

From anonymous to first-party: How to turn visitors into registered users and subscribers

It’s an age-old problem for publishers. How do you get casual readers to become loyal subscribers? Let’s first consider how publications strayed from reader engagement to understand the answer to this question. Fastener interviewed Mark Zohar at Viafoura to learn more about the history of audience engagement in digital publishing.

The Outsourcing Stop-gap

Before the internet, the number of publications remained constrained by labor and paper costs, forcing subscriptions on a local level and limiting competition. Yahoo opened the web in 1995, and in 2004, Web 2.0, followed by smartphones in 2007, delivered instant gratification, community and interactivity online. Shortly thereafter, web publications began to outsource their customer service, feedback and commenting abilities, allowing third parties to determine their fate, popularity and ultimately their content through clicks, likes, reviews, tweets and TikToks.

Publishers began validating vanity interactions rather than synergy with their readers. At the time, this was logical. Bots, spam and guerilla postings by malcontents required constant monitoring. Customer Management Systems (CMS) were expensive and required teams of marketing and tech experts to administer. Social media was free (sort of — publishers paid by relinquishing control, privacy and data) and increasingly the preferred method of communication between the business world and its customers. The time and cost of managing engagement, “who needs it!” proffered conventional wisdom.

Opportunity Cost

The cost of relying on third parties — the loss of business and customer intelligence, control and interaction — became apparent as time passed. Third parties, including social media, understood more about an organization’s customers than they did. After all, these outside entities communicated with their customers, collected data, directed them, entertained, and serviced them. These entities engaged and profited from the publisher’s work.

Consider the following facts:

  • Engaged visitors stay longer, go deeper and generate 4x more advertising opportunities.
  • They are 2x more likely to click on an ad.
  • Viafoura’s engaged users are 51x more likely to register.
  • And registered visitors are 45x more likely to subscribe than casual visitors to your digital properties.

Publishers that engage their readers monetize their properties. Engaging digitally means communication, and communication begins with taking power back to parlay and maintaining control of the wealth of first-party data each exchange produces.

Because publishers outsourced engagement, the vast majority of their visitors remained anonymous, with only a minute percentage registering or subscribing. Publishers continued living in the eighties but are trying to do business in the twenty-twenties, relying on third-party research to understand their readers.

How anonymous users become subscribers

Leading readers through the subscriber journey is relatively painless with the right tools. The Viafoura Digital Experience Platform (DXP) provides the interactivity and immediacy of social media while maintaining control on the publisher’s property of the data, opportunities and experience.

Viafoura’s DXP anonymous-to-subscriber strategy involves four levels: Engagement Suite, Personalization, Moderation, and Data.

Engagement suite

Creating loyal subscribers from anonymous readers begins with on-site engagement on publishers’ owned and operated digital properties. Readers who feel listened to return more often and dive deeper into your publication. Viafoura deploys various solutions to make readers feel at home, including social sharing, chat, Q&As and conversations. And then there is the ultimate VIP ticket, the live blogging platform coupled with Viafoura’s Conversations. Together or solo, each creates an immersive experience between a publication and its reader community, resulting in an average 600 percent lift in subscriptions.


Nobody wants to be an unknown number when engaging with a publication. Therefore, personalization is the next step in making anonymous readers cherished subscribers. Personalization includes capturing and using more than a person’s name. It means having options that craft an experience unique to each reader, including alerts, notifications, follow options, recommendations, and curated feeds. Readers feel like family when content is personalized to their needs, likes and wants. It is a mesmerizing experience that keeps them coming back. Viafoura’s DPX puts personalization under the publisher’s control.


Without comment moderation, the trolls take over, and suddenly a pleasant interaction becomes a toxic mix of vitriol, hurting the publication and the user experience. On average, a publisher will lose 80 percent of its anonymous readers due to a hostile environment. However, well-moderated engagement increases registrations and subscriptions by an average of 400 percent within six months. Viafoura’s DXP uses multiple strategies to streamline moderation and reduce the number of people needed to keep it going by customizing parameters to each publication’s policies across all properties and social media. Artificial intelligence combined with human expertise and easy-to-read dashboards take on the trolls and temper the tantrums to ensure engagement on its client’s publications remains civil, pleasurable and informative.


Data is worth more than gold in the digital world. It determines content, direction, strategy, partners, advertising, marketing, corporate expenditures, budgets, pricing, new products and investments—data is behind every informed decision. Yet many publishers give away their primary data by outsourcing engagement. Controlling all aspects of the publishing ecosystem delivers unprecedented intelligence that allows a publication to improve its content, better service its readers and strategically plan for the future. Viafoura’s DXP delivers far more than the 83 average metrics. Its digital engagement platform provides over 200 data points, vital information that elevates customer experience, value, and loyalty, which translates to subscribers.


Viafoura’s unique approach boosts on-site engagement, increasing user registrations and subscriptions. Additionally, it produces internet gold, the ultra-valuable first-party data that creates unique personas and insights exclusive to the publication. Detailed information permits publishers to fine-tune their content, increasing its value to their readers while simultaneously lifting advertising revenues and engagement. Happy readers become loyal readers. Loyal readers become subscribers—leading us back to the original question. How do digital publishers turn visitors into registered users and subscribers while improving their publications? They invest in engagement tools, and Viafoura’s DXP is the leader.

Publimetro – engaging and growing new levels of community with Viafoura

Publimetro, Mexico, is a daily newspaper currently focused on Chile, Colombia and Mexico. It is one of several Metro World News Media Group companies that cover 14 countries, and 7 languages. Their unique and powerful content is a direct result of their specialized editors, who give their readers the best, up-to-the-minute coverage of national and international news, sports, and entertainment across multiple platforms.

Publimetro Mexico is looking to not only grow its audience, but to provide them with a personalized and engaging digital experience that will expand their time on site. Publimetro’s goal is to create an environment that will both engage and grow its communities, while enhancing its first-party data strategy. With the use of Viafoura’s full suite of services, including Conversations, Moderation, Trending Articles, Comment Counter, as well as Topic and Author Follows, Publimetro Mexico will be able to identify how users are interacting with the content as well as create new communities for those segments within its data ”.

With the active, high intent, first-party data now being collected through their engaged users, Publimetro Mexico will be able to diversify their revenue streams by building deep and valuable user segments that will drive in-line ad revenue.

“We are very excited to be expanding into Mexico and bringing secure, eclectic and profitable communities to Publimetro! We’re looking forward to converting users down the funnel and adding a new, growing layer of engagement”  says Dalia Vainer, Director Customer Experience at Viafoura.

UGC Contributors Are Now Integral to Successful Content Strategies

You’ve put in the hard yards, integrated an effective Digital Experience Platform (DXP) with engagement and moderation solutions, and finally established a safe space for your audience community. With a community framework in place and a moderation solution in action – use this new found spare time to give due praise to the golden geese of your flock: the User Generated Content (UGC) Contributors. 

First things first: who are the high energy User Generated Content Contributors eager to publicly make their mark? Can their contributions be used as aspirational behaviour for other more passive users? If so, what are some ways to go about this that don’t feel disingenuous?

Positive reinforcement is a sure way to encourage users further down your audience funnel and strengthen retention. By putting the contributions of your community up on a pedestal, you are not only rewarding those ultra-valuable UGC Contributors with recognition, but you also broadcast to your community and beyond the kind of behaviour your brand values and celebrates. 

The returns on your efforts once you’ve integrated a solid UGC Contributor element to your existing audience-first content strategy will be ample revenue gains (in both ad and subscriptions) and a consistently expanding community of users steadily flowing through your audience funnel.

In order to determine how best to integrate UGC Creators into your strategy, you’ll need to first consider what tools and techniques are available to you, how to optimize the efficacy of UGC Content, and most importantly – how to do it in a way that uplifts your brand and drives its success.


Highlight Users Comments

On a smaller day-to-day basis, implementing a pinned comment strategy is a great way to highlight members of your community as well as set the tone for budding conversations. 

In some cases, having your editorial/content team kick off the discussion in the comments section with a pinned comment as a conversation starter can lead to immediate engagement and user contributions. Once those user comments roll in, swap out your comment with a user contribution that endorses your brand values, sets the tone, and encourages others to join in.


Editor’s Pick

Think about where you can reach different audiences at different stages of the audience funnel. 

If your editorial team sends out a newsletter, including a piece of UGC in an ‘Editor’s Pick’ segment is a great way to show you value the contributions of your community members and it gives registered members a reason to bring their own opinions and perspectives to the table in the hopes of being featured as well. 

To reach audiences that may not be signed up for newsletters, building these Editor’s Picks into readily available on-site content can inspire registered users and connect with as of yet unregistered visitors. Sharing these contributions with a broader audience has the potential to, once again, establish an aspirational behaviour for other users to strive for and improve engagement.



Not unlike highlighting what your UGC Contributors have shared, badges are a way for you to distinguish between different types of users engaging with your content and help foster a unique community specific to your site. Rewards beget rewards in this case, as users who have put in the time and energy to earn a badge of their own are far more likely to keep up their efforts and stay active and engaged.



At the end of the day, the audiences that seek out content and invest their time, energy, and money into your publication are the bread and butter of the publishing world. When we take their interests to heart and celebrate their loyalty and time spent on our platforms, we learn more and more about them through their data offerings and can in turn continue to provide them with the high-value interest focused content that they deserve.

What is a value exchange moment?

Publishing in the digital age, not unlike advertising, has become a conversation between audiences and content providers. A conversation that’s full of opportunities to form substantial and lasting relationships, that is – as long as both sides stand to benefit from a value exchange. Through entertainment, information and fostering a sense of community, it’s up to publishers to give audiences something worthwhile for what they have to offer as digital individuals: unique, rich, first party data.

If publishers are able to create interest, garner engagement, and earn subscriptions and all the first party data that comes with them, they gain a huge advantage. Continued access to first party data will inform improvements to their audience development strategy and usher in new growth; growth in their following and subscriber base and inevitably a marked boost to ad and subscription revenues.

However, digital savvy consumers are hyper focused on protecting their privacy by knowing exactly who’s collecting their data and what it’s being used for. Just recently, fast food chain Tim Hortons came under fire for collecting data without proper consent. Users will typically agree to provide personal data only if they believe it’s worth what they get in exchange. This decision is what we refer to as a value exchange moment, a point in time where the end user decides if what they receive is worth their trust and, of course, their personal information.

While the value a publisher may traditionally provide is content, more and more we are seeing that community has become a huge draw for prospective subscribers. For example, a user who regularly engages with a publisher’s content has a higher propensity to become an active member of the publisher’s community by registering or subscribing. The social perks may vary, but a more nuanced value point is the sense of reassurance a trusted community gives to newcomers. When faced with a group of folks who share interests and values, all of whom consent to share their data with the publisher, anonymous but engaged users are likely to feel at ease when it comes to sharing their information. As publishers, it’s essential to provide high quality content to draw in leads, but the value of a thriving community to prospective subscribers is just as valuable when seamlessly guiding users toward registered and subscribed states.

Once anonymous users have been drawn in by interest-rich content and/or community, they agree to a value exchange and join the ranks of subscribers. With access to their audience’s first party data (e.g. how much time they spend on site, which pages they view, how they engage with sponsored content, etc.), publishers gain a far better understanding of their audience as individuals and cohorts alike. With this data, publishers need only keep their audience growth strategies and first party data strategies up to date in order to keep optimizing their content and retain registered users while continuing to recruit new subscribers.

Once immersed in the community, formerly anonymous but active engaged users become user generated content (UGC) contributors – another value point for prospects on the outside looking in. These contributors comment often and create posts of their own within the community, typically generating over 41 times more pageviews and 100 times the amount of ad impressions compared to anonymous users. As the numbers demonstrate in the funnel above, engagement improves exponentially as users move further along the registration process. By retaining user interest and engagement, publishers not only get closer to the value exchange moment that earns them subscriptions, but they also reap the rewards of substantial growth in impressions as their audience members move further along the funnel’s stages.

Publishers who understand that the potential to maximize their registration, retention, and revenue lies directly in this value exchange moment are on track to setting themselves up for success. So long as users – anonymous, engaged, or fully subscribed – are benefiting from a continued value exchange for their information, publishers can continuously use that self-replenishing well of information to improve their offerings and win big in both audience loyalty and business growth.

Are You Getting The Best Value Out Of Your Engagement Tools?

If you’ve invested in an audience engagement solution, you’re probably well aware of how important the data you collect from the platform will be for the future performance of your business. Insights into how your existing users engage with content and the community built around it allows you to optimise your strategy. An optimised content strategy means you’ll produce more content that should drive additional users to convert into loyal subscribers.

Making those strategic decisions requires the right platform so that you can collect those insights. You need a solution that helps you collect first-party data and analyse on-site user behaviour. With that data in hand, you can effectively maximise the 3Rs:

  1. Registrations
  2. Retention
  3. Revenue

So how do you ensure you’re getting the best value out of your engagement tools? Our latest infographic offers a helpful visual guide on what you need from your platform and how it can help achieve your overarching business goals.

The right audience engagement platform should provide strategic recommendations that you can use to help grow the nature of your business. The technology should help you answer the questions of how to grow registrations, retain existing users, and increase revenue as the end benefit for all of your hard work.

Your team should find daily value from their audience engagement platform. They should not only know how to use the platform, but they should also understand why there’s so much value to be gained from these solutions. You’ll know the platform is a success if your team:

  • Feels motivated to use the platform every day
  • Increases productivity across the entire spectrum of your business
  • Understands how each of the core features helps solve the underlying business needs
  • Has the desire to collaborate with other departments and gain the deepest understanding of user intent and behavioural insights

If answers to any of these questions are anything short of yes, it might be time to ask yourself a much harder question: do you have the right audience engagement solution? Remember that audience engagement is the first step towards monetisation and greater revenue for your business. Without a platform that can help you gain the necessary insights to make effective revenue-driven decisions, you will likely struggle to achieve those aspirational growth targets.

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