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Home Page Communities Data and Analytics How good are news organizations today at data and news analytics, and how can they get better?

This topic contains 1 reply, has 2 voices, and was last updated by Jenna Owsianik Jenna Owsianik 4 months, 2 weeks ago.

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  • #53993

    One of the biggest opportunities of the shift to digital is the rich user and audience data that can be gathered and applied to create greater engagement, grow audiences and generate higher-value outcomes for advertisers and sponsors.

    While many news organizations are implementing data and analytics tools, not all are using them to shape actively how they work.

    What is your perception of the state of data and analytics in news organizations globally, and what could be done to lift the bar and get better outcomes?

  • #55279

    It is my understanding that digital news organizations like BuzzFeed and Quartz have done a good job collecting and analyzing user data to inform short- and long-term editorial practices. Some legacy media organizations like The Guardian and The New York Times are leveraging analytics as well, but it’s the older regional and local newspapers that are lagging behind.

    In particular, The Guardian’s success with its in-house analytics software Ophan highlights some best practices other media outlets can follow. First, Ophan is a bespoke tool tailored to the publication’s objectives. Obviously, different news sites have different aims regarding target audience, audience engagement, and revenue models. Relying on general analytics software like Google Analytics means certain traffic data is missed or not collected. Or, unless user-friendly custom dashboards are set up, important data can easily remain hidden.

    This brings me to my next point: it’s crucial that analytics tools are user-friendly for individual journalists. Part of this could mean hiring or training data literate workers so they can make sense of a wide breath of information. Another is offering software that’s easy to navigate and highlights important metrics clearly. This way journalists can pitch and cover stories well informed by analytics, which would hopefully streamline reporting and complement insight from editors.

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