In July, SIPA was pleased to welcome 23 members of the Information Industry Network (a former SIIA division in Europe) into the SIPA community. With that transfer came a lot more ideas, knowledge and strategies that can be shared between members.
Let's start with five sites that caught my eye for something significant they are doing:
1. Establish a clear, defining, responsive website. Incisive Media recently relaunched COVERmagazine.co.uk. COVER is the leading brand for the UK life assurance sector. The project saw Incisive relaunch all its editorial sites onto a new responsive template to reflect growing mobile traffic and a demand for slicker, more engaging digital products.
Most impressive is the clarity. Headlines are short and sweet—"Running up (and down) the CMA private hospital hill." It's timely—all the articles are from August. And testimonials are mixed in promoting their Protection and Health Summit 2016.
"Our focus on mobile resonates strongly with the forces that are shaping life assurance going forward, particularly wearable tech," says COVER publisher Rachel Calvert. "The new site and app show that we are in tune with our audience's requirements and they place us neatly to deliver relevant commercial solutions."
2. Be creative with lead generation. Dietmar Schantin, head of the Institute for Media Strategies, delivers wonderful case studies on the newspapers that his group works with. I just got sucked into reading one on the Hindustan Times. There's also a video that goes with the story. That's in front, but to get the full article, you have to give your contact information.
Here's the inviting paragraph: "Mobile, data and social media have become crucial success factors in a media landscape where print is still regarded as the main platform for news publishers. Nic Dawes, Chief Editorial and Content Officer, and Rajesh Mahapatra, Executive Editor, give a unique insight into this challenging journey that started back in 2014."
Schantin offers this piece of advice: "Rather than picking out clear goals and then working towards them, a lot of organizations try to avoid the sticky problems by coming up with a vision. As the old joke goes, 'If you have visions then go see a doctor.' Far too many 'visions' are actually marketing slogans unrelated to attainable goals."
3. Sell ads and offer reports on your site. Global Water Intelligence does an excellent job of filling their homepage with ads without sacrificing content and quality. Weekly News is front and center along with the cover of their magazine, while ads take up the right rail and an unobtrusive banner appears near the top. One key is that most of the advertisers are using the same color palette—blue (water) with some red or orange mixed in.
A report called "Water's Digital Future" also stands out prominently. "Big data is changing the face of the water industry." Why should water be any different?
4. Use video to promote events. On the site for QMJ Publishing Limited's Natural Stone Show 2017 you'll be met by an enticing video. The video shows clips from sessions, features attendees speaking about the conference, and highlights a diverse selection of people and exhibitors—with many countries represented. Above the video it simply says "The Place to do business." Below are attractive photos from the show. Rotating tweets and industry news take up the right rail. It's all very well done.
5. Keep a good blog going. It seems that blogs may be a little more popular across the pond than here. EditorEye posts about twice monthly. I especially like the one titled Roadmap to Innovation: A CEO Checklist. This is no short article. It delivers key finds from a 2016 report and a checklist on your road to innovation. At the end it says, "EditorEye Catalyst is the leading executive intelligence platform which delivers insights to senior management teams... Get in touch via [email] to learn more."