The start of 2018 saw many high profile publishers diversify their channels and work harder to deepen relationships with existing readers, while also trying to find new audiences.
Relying too heavily on a single channel has been the death of some publishers and as algorithms change, caused others struggle when referral traffic suddenly dropped from their biggest traffic sources.
Consider Going Multi-Channel
Multi-channel publishing is accessible to small and large publishers alike, however which channels to start testing, depends largely on a publishers audience and goals. In this post we touch on and briefly explain some of the larger channels, all of which Canvasflow supports as a publishing channel option.
Medium is a digital publishing platform dedicated to longform content. Their mission is to democratise publishing, to be the one place where all the brightest thinkers, dreamers and writers congregate.
The loose attitude of Medium, the easy to use CMS and ability to link to your own domain name has made Medium a great option for a lot of publishers, as either their whole blog solution, or to use as another channel to push content and spark the interest of influencers.
Ideas and perspectives you won’t find anywhere else.
To make reposting content easy, they provide the ability to ‘Import’ content, automatically pulling it from a URL (even content you don’t own, to create a flipboard style feed) and adding a rel=’nofollow’ attribute so the original web-based content doesn’t lose rank. Alternatively, using the Canvasflow ‘Medium’ publish channel allows seamless publishing.
A more indepth argument for using Medium can be found on TheNextWeb.
WordPress is open-source software allowing easy creation of responsive websites or blogs, or simply the creation and management of content on custom-designed sites.
Talking about the benefit of using WordPress is really just talking about the benefit of having a web-based blog – easily accessible, readable content on desktop that can be referenced and shared across the web.
The WordPress CMS is simple to use, and with Canvasflow for WordPress Plugin, allows publishers to convert content from WordPress into an existing Canvasflow publication to repurpose or re-publish to other channels, such as a mobile app in clean HTML5. Alternatively, Canvasflow also allows publishers to publish from Canvasflow to WordPress using our WordPress Connector, making it another outgoing publishing channel.
With 60 million users across the UK and US, the pre-installed iOS app is a great place to push content, especially multimedia. Creating a publication and posting to Apple News is simple, and provides publishers with the ability to post content either in RSS (publisher’s blog/website format) or Apple News Format (specifically optimised for iOS devices).
Apple News allows users to choose topics they’re interested in and then be served with a personalised, curated news feed, with support for offline reading and sharing of content.
While many large publishers find they gain a lot of traffic from Apple News, there’s still room for smaller publishers to capture eyeballs in niche topics. High-quality content that’s proven to be reputable and consistent can also successfully make use of Apple News’ subscription-based publication option.
Facebook Instant Articles
Instant Articles are a way for publishers to deliver content to readers to read directly within the Facebook app, boasting a load speed 10x faster than that of AMP and automatically responsive (and interactive!).
There’s no denying the number of readers Instant Articles pulls in, and over 65% of consumers now claim to get their news from social media over traditional sources, a figure that’s up since 2017.
Facebook has shifted their focus recently to engaging users and providing the tools for publishers to capture longtime readers, through CTA’s and interactive media content support.
Instant Articles has mainly been aimed at the newsy, journalistic kind of content as Facebook tries to take the position as the top source of news. With recent backlash over clickbait and ‘fakenews’, accurate well-written content is more appreciated now than ever before. There’s also opportunities for B2B and industry news on Facebook, when treated as another channel to reach new audiences, rather than purely another way to monetise content.
Diversifying channels as a Digital Publisher
Whether a publisher should focus on multiple channels largely depends on their industry and monetisation model. For many, diversifying channels even for a small portion of their content can be extremely beneficial in discovering new audiences and new opportunities to get content shared.
With Canvasflow we’ve made it simple for publishers to make use of multiple channels at once, without straying outside of their everyday workflow.