For its entire existence, Cosmopolitan has been a women's magazine that guys avoided. One thing that Cosmo has always been good at is initiating makeovers and the latest makeover the magazine did was on its own website. Along with some content changes, Cosmo also made some functional alterations to its website that will make it more competitive going forward and in a better position to take advantage of the digital age.
Mobile Is The Way To Go
Before we look at any content changes Cosmo made, it is important to go behind the scenes and look at a couple of the bigger functional alterations that were made. If you run a publishing website, then it is impossible to ignore your mobile audience any long. According to AdWeek.com, Cosmo estimates that nearly 70 percent of its online audience comes from mobile users.
To that end, the magazine invested heavily in creating an interactive mobile website that allows mobile users to have all the functionality they want. It is a smart investment, especially when you consider that mobile technology will only continue to expand as the premier form of Internet access in the coming years.
Relevant Content Now
Cosmo has significantly improved its CMS interface to allow editors to be able to add or update relevant content immediately. For a publishing website, few things are more important than being able to offer an audience content that is hot right now. With the way that information is constantly flowing on the Internet, the ability to add relevant content right now is powerful.
The Shift Is Towards Social Media
Cosmo editor Amy Odell did an interview with Folio Magazine where she talked about the interaction between the mobile audience and social media. Online publishers who focus only on search engines are getting left behind as social media sites are becoming the primary way that people get their information.
Cosmo has recognized the importance of social media and has included more social media friendly content in its recent makeover. The goal is to develop interactive social media content that will expand the magazine's online audience and add strength to its social media presence.
Personalize The Experience
On the FastCoDesign.com website, Troy Brown of Hearst Publications said that Cosmo's makeover is indicative of where all of the company's publishing websites are heading. By using social media feeds and native advertising that adjusts to a reader's preferences, Cosmo will be able to create a more personalized experience for every reader and that is projected to be one of the big attractions for publishing websites in the coming years.
Owners of publishing websites need to take a cue from Cosmo because part of the magazine's online makeover includes enhanced use of paywalls for premium content. Not only is Cosmo going to develop content that will attract a male audience, it is also going to use Internet metrics and trending information to determine what kinds of content users will pay for and then maximize profits with premium content.
There is a lot that a publishing website owner can take away from the Cosmo makeover, but the biggest observation has to be the notion that the way you used to do things simply does not work anymore. If you want your publishing website to compete, then you have to identify the latest methods for revenue enhancement and utilize them on your site.