Posts Tagged ‘huffington post’

Yahoo News developing politics, opinion site similar to Huffington Post

December 24th, 2009

According to a recent posting on Yahoo’s job board, the company is looking for an Editor-in-Chief to oversee a new opinion and politics section. The new section appears to be geared toward people who favour sites such as the Huffington Post.

The news editor will be tasked with building a network of freelance writers and bloggers who will write opinion and analysis articles, as well as blog posts. Yahoo says its goal is to make its news site deeper and richer with content that will “complement” breaking news from AP and Reuters. For those who follow news, it’s perhaps no surprise the highly-trafficked Yahoo News site is looking to broaden its reach into new media, as sites like the Huffington Post have shown a growing reader appetite for opinion pieces and political news.

The Huffington Post has also attracted a great deal of attention from advertisers, something all media executives have noticed. According to comScore numbers, Yahoo News attracted 138 million unique visitors worldwide in November 2009 – more uniques than Google News, CNN or the New York Times.

In the U.S., Yahoo News attracted nearly 39 million unique visitors in November 2009, while the Huffington Post pulled in about 9 million uniques. The Huffington Post has grown 27 percent year-over-year, while Yahoo News’ growth was relatively flat over the same period.

According to MediaPost, Growth at Yahoo News, the No. 1 site on the list, was flat at 38.7 million uniques. CNN Digital Network had the highest average of sessions per person at 7.3 in November, while the Huffington Post increased its traffic in November 2009, up 27% to 8.9 million year-over-year. Yahoo News hopes to tap into that growing population that craves politics and opinion.

The company is looking for someone in Washington, D.C. who has with seven to 10 years experience at a newspaper, magazine, wire service or online news site. Election experience is a must, and the editor will be asked to make appearances on shows such as Meet the Press and This Week.

Yahoo News says the editor of its new politics and opinion section will play a vital role going into election coverage in future years.

Huffington Post to offer advertisers spot in comments, twitter feed

December 15th, 2009

As advertisers look for new and more effective ways to reach out to consumers, the Huffington Post thinks it has the answer: monetizing social media.

According to AdAge, the Huffington Post will let advertisers pay to put comments among reader-submitted comments, and sponsored Tweets into the site’s live Twitter feed.

The Huffington Post, often called “HuffPo,” is a U.S.-based news and commentary site founded by Arianna Huffington.

While nobody has bought into the advertising idea quite yet, the idea has piqued interest in the world of advertising.

“It’s interruptive, potentially, but it also presents an opportunity for the advertiser to say something worthwhile,” Ian Schafer, CEO of interactive agency Deep Focus, told AdAge. “In theory, there’s more upside in doing it that way than in buying a banner ad. With those the default behavior is to ignore them. With this the default behavior may be to pay attention.”

Greg Coleman, the site’s president and chief revenue officer, said paid posts will be clearly marked and advertisers will get help on the best ways to join conversations. Coleman argues the format would give advertisers a way to start dialogue with readers.

For example, a discussion on football could include a sponsored post that includes relevant sports stats. Furthermore, a company that makes vitamins or health products could sponsor a tweet related to lifestyle and health.

“Although they’ve had a few years to get used to it, advertisers are still wary of social media sites because of the uncertain nature of user comments,” writes David Kaplan of PaidContent. “But as the ad recession has dragged on and standard display units are regarded tepidly, publishers and marketers are desperate to find ways to connect with audiences.”

The Huffington Post says advertisers need to see this as an opportunity to add value to a conversation rather than simply try and sell product.

The move into new forms of advertising comes at a time when the site is putting increasing attention on monetization. Coleman says the site expects to double revenue by next year and it’s now hiring more senior sales execs and buying third-party research on traffic and visitors. Coleman did not give AdAge any specifics on current revenue.

The Huffington Post is not the first site to look at sponsored posts, but with an increasing footprint in the social media world it’s getting a lot of attention with every move it makes.

“Clearly Ariana Huffington has spotted two trends in Twitter that make it a neat match-up for the news aggregation in HuffPo: Twitter’s growing userbase, and the way the system is increasingly being used by PR professionals for networking, client contacting, and news promotion,” wrote Kit Eaton of FastCompany.

The Huffington Post attracted nearly five million monthly uniques in November, according to comScore. And while the site is most well known for its political commentary and coverage, Coleman said 82 percent of pageviews in November were from non-political content such as entertainment and business.

If advertisers start adopting new methods of marketing their products, it remains to be seen how readers will react. While the Huffington Post says paid posts will be clearly marked, reader reaction to sponsored comments and tweets may be less than favourable.

Furthermore, it’s not entirely clear how the site will react if a company does not pay for a comment post, but instead engages in dialogue in the comment section anyway.