According to some recent studies on search optimization and content marketing,
1. Most of the traffic to websites is still coming from search.
2. “Relevant content creation” is the most effective search strategy.
It should come as no surprise then that Digiday Research found most publishers expect to increase the volume of content they produce in 2019, even in the absence of additional funding.
“Despite the challenges faced by some publishers, the majority [63% of respondents] say they’re continuing to grow their investment in their editorial output,” says Mark Weiss, based on a survey of 200 publishing executives conducted this month by Digiday. “59% of respondents surveyed said they are expanding their editorial budgets overall, and only 8% plan to cut back on funding.”
To increase the amount of content they generate, publishers are considering several strategies, including traditional ones like staffing, and also investing in artificial-intelligence tools to help journalists increase their output.
For example, The Atlantic confirmed to Digiday that it had already hired 30 of the roughly 50 journalists it planned to add, and was producing more editorial content as a result. Forbes and Bloomberg are using AI-tools for generating article suggestions, summaries and even writing rough drafts for writers to finish.
Readers’ expectations have changed, as have the demands of social networks and other distribution channels which have offered up bottomless feeds of content for readers to consume.Mark Weiss, Digiday Research
There are a few exceptions to this trend, Digiday found—like Gannett and BuzzFeed—who have trimmed down their editorial staff this year. To offest the impact on content production, they are exploring other strategies, like focusing on topics that drive higher engagement, or relying more heavily on unpaid contributors to generate quizzes, for example.
On the other hand, Vice said that despite layoffs, it will not be producing less content, but rather will continue to “diversify its content.”
“It’s been a rough year so far for many publishers,” says Mark. “But that doesn’t change the economics of their businesses, and many will have little choice but to continue producing content at a similar rate despite their cutbacks.”
Click here to access the full report.