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Data monetisation key priority for online publishers in 2014

The Association of Online Publishers has released the findings of the annual AOP Census. This year’s census, which surveys 700 brands to reveal the themes and issues driving the UK’s online publishing landscape, particularly highlights the growing importance of data to digital publishers.

Author: News Desk

Posted on: 29 April 2014 07:40

Data monetisation key priority for online publishers in 2014

John Barnes: "The AOP Census is a fantastic tool for us to gauge the topics and issues that really matter to the UK’s online publishing industry."

The results found the theme of data monetisation will be the key issue facing the country’s online publishers over the next 12 months, with 89% of those surveyed planning to grow their investment into data technology in 2014. The survey – which looks at market attitudes towards areas including investment, recruitment and revenues – also revealed that hiring staff with data skills has grown in importance over the past year. In total 58% of publishing houses are looking to hire data and data analytics personal in the next 12 months, up from 30% last year.

The overarching impact of data in digital publishing is also expected to impact partnerships over the coming months, with 57% of those surveyed expecting to develop technology partnerships in data management this year – coming above anticipated partnerships in mobile or tablet apps.

Video is also set for a major boom in 2014, with an overwhelming majority of UK publishers (64%) confirming they will up their investment in this technology over the next 12 months, as they look for new ways to engage with an ever changing audience.

The focus on data is a development from recent years; in the 2013 AOP Census it was mobile which dominated priorities and spending. As predicted by last year’s survey, mobile has grown significantly over the past 12 months, with 71% of publishers seeing a ‘major increase’ in mobile audiences. Unsurprisingly, mobile continues to be a key focus when investing in technology, with 79% of surveyees looking to invest in mobile and app development over the coming year.

Report Highlights

* 71% of publishers saw a major increase in mobile audiences and 60% saw the same rise for tablets over the course of 2013

* 89% of publishers plan to grow their data technology investments in the next 12 months

* 58% of publishing houses will aim to hire data analytics personal this year – up from 30% in 2013

* Tablet apps are likely to be the main source of paid revenues for over half of publishers this year

* 70% of digital publishers will use more private ad exchanges in 2014, while 61% say they will increase their use of Real Time Bidding (RTB) in the same period

* Publishers see the ongoing incorporation of video into the publishing ecosystem as a major driver of user engagement. An overwhelming majority (64%) of surveyees said they would grow their video investment in 2014

John Barnes, the Chairman of the AOP, said of this year’s survey: “The AOP Census is a fantastic tool for us to gauge the topics and issues that really matter to the UK’s online publishing industry but it is equally important to our members, who can use the findings of the survey to benchmark themselves within the industry. This year’s findings confirm the mobile and apps are a growing element in digital publishing, and we look forward to working with our members over the next 12 months, as this industry continues to evolve with these technological developments.”

Tim Cain, Managing Director of AOP, also commented: “Data has been talked about in terms of its importance for a long time but we are now seeing real focus dedicated to driving the collection, analysis and interpretation as it permeates every aspect of the digital business from content creation, to marketing and revenue generation. We can expect to see growing sophistication in its usage going forward.”

About AOP

The AOP says: “The UK Association of Online Publishers (AOP) is an industry body representing digital publishing companies that create original, branded, quality content. AOP champions the interests of media owners from diverse backgrounds including newspaper and magazine publishing, TV and radio broadcasting, and pure online media.”

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