June 9, 2022
I had the privilege of spending the first week of April in Alexandria, Virginia, at Super Niche, a conference bringing together more than 200 niche publishers and the providers that support them. It was great to connect with industry experts in-person for fantastic discussions, brainstorming, and educational sessions.
Regardless of industry, publishers are facing many of the same issues—keeping audiences engaged, balancing the growth of digital distribution with the revenue earned from print, and keeping those email open rates high. What is great about our industry is that people are willing to help each other out—just because a reader is engaged with one brand doesn’t mean they can’t engage equally with another!
I was given the opportunity to present to industry leaders some key strategies everyone can take to grow, engage, and retain their audiences.
The very important first step to managing your audience is to know your audience. Your audience is not just the people getting your publication—they are the people getting newsletters, downloading white papers, attending your webinars and live events, participants in associations and visitors to your website. Defining your audience is essential for putting plans in place to move your audience forward.
There is such a thing as “too much data,” Data that doesn’t generate revenue creates noise and makes it more difficult to find the important data—the data your sales team can use to sell your brand. Making sure that important data is up to date is just as important—advertisers don’t want old data.
Related Reading: Scoring Your Audience and Why It Matters
Setting goals and creating a plan or roadmap are crucial steps to managing your audience. Set goals that are measurable. Instead of “We want to grow our audience,” set a goal of “We want to grow our digital audience by 10% and maintain our print distribution.” Put in place a roadmap of how you will achieve these goals—and make sure to stick with it! That doesn’t mean you can’t adjust, but making sure you are still working toward the same goal is key.
You need to engage with your audience on all fronts—using conventional methods of email subscription marketing, cover tips, qualification cards, direct mailers, and telemarketing. These tried-and-true methods work well and can help you achieve the goals you have set. Taking advantage of technologies that identify visitors to your website, using that data to retarget those visitors in other platforms (Facebook, LinkedIn, Google) is another great way to engage with your audience—both known and unknown.
Using all those engagement methods in combination with a progressive engagement plan is another great strategy to manage your audience. Get the most demographic information up front and then get additional information in smaller requests over time. This way you don’t overwhelm the reader with a 30-question subscription form, and you keep them engaged along the way.
Finally, examining content to audience match is essential. Publishers routinely produce great content, but the content needs to be what your audience wants. Making sure that publishers focus on producing content that results in high levels of engagement makes the task of managing and developing an audience possible.
Audativ has expertise in these top topics for publishers and can offer strategy and management for your audience. Connect with us and see what we can do to help you build the strongest audience possible.