With the relaunch of Fitnessmagazine.com and the introduction of native advertising, Meredith Corporation is signaling a new phase of innovation for its sites that are aimed at improving experiences for end users and advertisers alike. According to Andy Wilson, Meredith Senior Vice President and Chief Digital Officer, the company has had an adaptive design strategy for some time however, given that sites like Fitnessmagazine.com derive as much as half of their traffic from mobile, it was time to make a more significant shift.
The new site is tailored to their users’ media consumption habits and advertiser objectives. It features a responsive design that’s fully optimized for users across devices and screen sizes. Fitness was an optimal place to start within the Meredith suite of brands, says Wilson, because “we are finding that certain brands, like Fitness, are more attractive to the millennial target. The way they are accessing our sites has changed. They use the content at different times and are doing much more on mobile devices.”
Increasing mobile consumption was not the sole motivation for the site redesign, of course. Creating better opportunities for content discovery, and better aligning content consumption with advertising were also significant factors. The site includes enhanced social sharing and new features like infinite-scrolling category pages that allow users to easily discover the brand’s deep content in areas like workouts, healthy eating and diet and weight loss.
The new design not only helps increase content discovery, but has the added benefit of improving ad viewability. “This relaunch not only gives consumers a mobile-first experience, but it also allows us to develop richer integrated opportunities for our advertisers to drive better performance and viewability to meet their goals,” says Wilson.
With the relaunch of the site, Meredith Digital also introduced its Native “Buzz” Platform. Buzz units will integrate marketers’ messaging into trending and highly contextual content areas. According to Wilson, Meredith is rolling out native advertising with its newer sites and leveraging a cross-platform approach for ad sales and ad distribution. “It simplifies things versus selling each individual platform. But more importantly, it lets us focus on performance, regardless of platform.”
Buzz is the first in a suite of performance-based ad products that will soon rollout across 10 Meredith owned and operated websites. “We are very excited about delivering a line of performance ad products that will let us tap into search and content marketing budgets.” The new products will allow Meredith to capture new ad revenue streams and go head to head with the big players in search and social. “Our offering will be compared against the Google and Facebook ad spend but we provide a contextual environment and engaged audiences and we are 100 percent audited. We are going look good in these comparisons.”