One of the biggest drives for publishers in the past decade or two have been transitioning their print content to digital. For some it is all about maintaining the magazine's brand essence online, yet others have enjoyed success in amalgamating print publications to create new web first brands.
A good example of the latter is ALT.dk, a female focused website from Denmark owned by Egmont Publishing. As digital editor Sara Wilkins explains curating articles from eight printed magazines has helped to create the nation’s most popular women’s website in the country.
Sara will be giving more details on this process as well as offering a wider view of magazine publishing in the Nordic region at Digital Innovators’ Summit in Berlin, Germany on 19-20 March 2018. Save 100's of euros by registering with our Early Bird rate, available until 14 February. Sign up for your discounted tickets here.
Sara Wilkins. Photo: Linkedin/sarawilkinskristiansen
I’ve been working in journalism since I was 14 years old when I was offered an internship at my favorite Danish youth magazine at the time, Vi Unge. Since then, I’ve studied journalism at University of Southern Denmark, which included an internship at Danish newspaper Politiken, before moving to New York City to study Creative Publishing and Critical Journalism at The New School for Social Research in order to better understand and reflect on challenges and opportunities in journalism and the publishing industry in general. I started working as a digital journalist at ALT.dk in September 2016 and became digital lifestyle editor in November 2017.
Egmont Publishing is a leading magazine publisher in the Nordic region, publishing more than 700 monthly and weekly magazines around the world. In Denmark, we produce a wide range of difference magazines for men, women and children. ALT.dk is currently the largest women’s website in Denmark, consisting of articles from eight women’s magazines, including: ALT for damerne, Eurowoman, Hendes Verden, Hjemmet, Fit Living, Boligliv, RUM and Vores Børn. Apart from this, we are a smaller team of journalists who create original content for ALT.dk.
The goal was for ALT.dk to become the largest website for Danish women with five strong sections on lifestyle, food, fashion, health and children. So far, we have succeeded beyond our hopes and have just completed our most successful month in the history of ALT.dk with almost one million users in October 2017 – bringing us to number 10 in Danish Online Index (an index listing the biggest websites in Denmark).
Many of our print titles had their own websites before ALT.dk so it was a big operation, ensuring that all the articles were transferred correctly onto the ALT.dk page without losing their SEO status in Google. One of the challenges has been some digital down-time due to server issues, but largely, we’ve been very successful in migrating eight print titles onto one digital platform and we see continued growth in reader and user numbers.
All of our print magazines have strong brands in their own right so it also took some explaining internally to convince everyone that one digital platform with five strong sections was the right strategy and way to go.
We are constantly focusing on optimising our site so advertisers who value good content will have a strong platform to advertise from. We also plan to strengthen our relation to those of our e-commerce businesses that are interested in the same target groups that our content relates directly to. And we are of course working closely with the Egmont-owned companies Jollyroom, Bageren og Kokken, MED24 and Nicehair. Acquiring e-commerce companies within the special interest areas of Egmont Publishing is an important part of the Egmont strategy.
Apart from this, we are looking at new business models and market deals – also outside of Denmark. One recent example is the cooperation between the Egmont-owned TV2 in Norway and the international media group Schibsted. Models like this could work well in Denmark too.
We mainly post articles on Facebook and currently rely heavily on social media. Forty per cent of our traffic comes from Facebook while 45 per cent comes from Google and five per cent comes from direct visits to ALT.dk and newsletters etc. We are working actively with SEO to ensure that our content has the longest digital life possible and believe that, as we continue to grow, more people will visit ALT.dk directly instead of finding us through social media.
Videos generally perform well on Facebook so we are looking into video content at ALT.dk and admire the people at Upworthy (American media company), among others, for their ability to tell stories effectively with videos that catch the attention of millions of people every week.
I think we face the same challenges here as many places around the world: How do we continue to deliver content of high quality in a world where almost anyone can become a “publisher” on social media and where readers have gotten used to content being free? We believe quality journalism and strong credibility is the right strategy and will continue to live up to our core value – bringing stories to life – whatever platform readers decide to turn to in the future. We are also working actively to find new ways to monetise on our digital content by looking at things like video, content marketing, professional partnerships and strengthening of our e-commerce businesses.
***Discounted registration for DIS2018 (19-20 March in Berlin) is now available with our Early Bird rate. Save hundreds of euros on the registration price when you sign up by 14 February 2018. Secure your place here***
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