This week, Claus Enevoldsen, Head of Growth for news aggregation platform Flipboard, talks about being a technology company with media values, how their human-led algorithms work to surface quality content, and why now is the perfect time for a platform like Flipboard. He also dives into the reasons behind their rise in both users and referral traffic over the past year.
In the news roundup, we ask WTF is going on with Facebook and Nick Clegg, Facebook and video metrics, and Craigslist and journalism. The team makes liberal use of censor bleeps.
In our own words: Esther Kezia Thorpe
It was only a couple of weeks ago that Flipboard made headlines, having quietly slipped past Google News to take fourth place for referral traffic to publishers, behind Facebook and Google, and only just behind Twitter.
I was as cynical as anyone else, remembering the platform for its quirky ‘flipping pages’ motions, and certainly couldn’t work out who still used it, let alone how it was able to account for referral traffic when it ingested content in the same way as Apple News into its own walled garden.
So I was pleasantly surprised when I re-downloaded and opened the app in preparation for this interview. The interface to surface articles is much the same, but when you now tap on one, it takes you directly to the article on the publisher’s site where, of course, said publisher can monetise in their own ecosystem.
Claus goes through the reasons for this and how the app has evolved over this time, as well as their journey to 145 million ‘active’ app users. I’ve rounded up some of the key points from this in an article, because this is a platform that is worth a second look from publishers who may otherwise be tempted by Apple News’ walled garden.
Any platform which (honestly) recognises the vital part that publishers have to play in their existence, and are willing to evolve their product to make that relationship better (past mere lip service), deserve the strong growth and success that Flipboard are seeing this year.
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