The skinny: with acquisitions of Zite, Pulse, and Summly respectively by CNN, Linkedin, and Yahoo, content readers are hot. Three is a trend.
It's been more than two years since I published the beginnings of a list of power tools for content aggregation and curation, and content is hotter than ever.
Posterous may be gone, and Google Reader on its way out, yet social magazines and news readers are exploding.
Feedly, Pulse, Zite, and Newsblur are just a few examples of services ready to fill the void. Digg even announced it will develop a replacement for Google Reader by July 1, the date when the search giant will close it down.
Facebook introduced its own new news feed and will make it available to everyone who signed up for it after the early stages of the slow roll out the company is using to collect feedback.
Sites are evolving in two directions.
- More, bigger images (think Pinterest, Instagram culture), videos to engage, white space to guide the eye — examples of site candy abound lately, the Summly app is clean and easy to navigate (will Yahoo keep it going?)
- Deeper, long form narrative for slow, engaged reading that builds context is making a comeback — some examples are the Great Discontent interviews, feature stories on Wired and The Atlantic
Food for thought as you prepare to enter the second quarter of the year.
Invest in creative design up front and figure out a plan for how you want to attract and serve the needs of customers through content. It will pay off in the short term and the long run, especially when you have a plan, stay focused, and iterate based on user feedback.
Speaking of which, I'm long overdue for a blog migration to WordPress and consolidation of my digital life under my main site, which could do with an update. The plan is under way, have faith.
Valeria is an experienced listener. She is also frequent speaker at
conferences and companies on a variety of topics. To book her for a
speaking engagement click here.