5 Lessons from News Publishing History that Rule Publisher Mobile App Development

mobile app contentThere has been so much discussion about developing mobile strategies for newsrooms and publishers with some pundits going so far as saying that the future of journalism is “mobile-first.” Whether or not you’re ready to develop a mobile-first strategy for your content, there is no denying that you do need to make sure your content is mobile-friendly as quickly as possible.

Prioritizing mobile publishing requires a shift in thinking from traditional publishing, but that doesn’t mean you should ignore the lessons from publishing history that are just as relevant in mobile content distribution.

Following are five publishing history lessons to keep in mind as you develop a mobile app to deliver your content to your audience anytime and anywhere.

1. Task-Based

Mobile content should be all about the user experience. What does the user want to accomplish when he or she opens your mobile app? What content do they want to access and why? Don’t simply provide a mobile version of your website if your audience wants to do something specific. Create task-based apps with a laser focus on user intent for niche audiences looking for specific content.

2. Time Sensitive

When do people use their smartphones and tablets? Offer content through your mobile app that is useful to them when they’re likely to be using their smartphones and tablets. Just as morning and evening editions of newspapers and television news programs differed based on the audience and moment in the daily news cycle, your publisher mobile app needs to change as the day progresses.

3. Device Centric

Content should be delivered in formats that work best on each device. For example, longer stories are easier to read on a tablet than a smartphone. Quick, short, and frequent updates are typically preferred on smartphones. Match the content to the device to improve the overall user experience.

4. Location Specific

Mobile devices can be used 24 hours per day and in any location. Therefore, it makes sense to include localization in your publisher mobile app. Consider how you can offer location-based services, news, information, and content to your audience through your mobile app, so it becomes a necessary part of their lives while they’re out and about.

5. Personalizable

If users can’t personalize your mobile app, it’s success will be extremely limited. Make sure they can customize their home page, content feeds, alerts, and so on, so they have quick and easy access to the content that matters most to them. This is a critical part of creating a user experience that will satisfy your audience, build loyalty to your app, content, and brand, and drive the results you want and need.

To learn more about making your content available to mobile audiences, download the free Newstex ebook, “The Publisher’s Guide to Mobile and Tablet Development,” and to see these lessons in action, check out the updated PR Newswire mobile app from Newstex.

Image: Adam Kurzok

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