Four Steps to Become a Stories-First Publisher

Steve Takizawa

Web stories with a rich multi-media wrapper has become the default format for the new era of content consumption with a whole new youth demographic. For those wondering why, it’s apparent that consumer behavior has shifted to include a media format that garners over 10 times more social video shares than text and images combined. With the demographics change, nearly two thirds of all U.S. households are consuming web stories and short-videos with even higher figures for the GenZ and Millennial cohort in 2018, and are rapidly on the rise. 

As a publisher, this is an exciting time, that despite the new format ripe for an engaged and youthful audience, the open web is still at the early stages of the Story format. There are over 350 million active blogs, publishers, online stores and business sites encompassing nearly 250 billion monthly visits that have not gotten up to speed on the new story format. In addition, story formats are a rich and engaging format that’s gaining ubiquity in newer platforms like Pinterest, YouTube, and even LinkedIn enabling creativity to help you engage with new audiences.  

So if you’re wondering how you go from zero to a full-fledged Web Stories publisher for your media outlet, here’s where you can start. We start by giving you the framework for building a robust and easily accessible technology platform that has all your Web Stories needs taken care of from day one! 

Step 1 — Story Suite Creation

Most publishers might be nervous that they have a dearth of web stories content to publish on your website. But rest assured, publishers and media outlets are the best place to begin a stories-first strategy, given that all it takes is to build a basic library of at least 30 web stories.

Better yet, you can begin with an existing repository of content from your own publishing house or media outlet that you can safely repurpose for your launch.  

Step 2 — Story Suite Implementation

The best part of implementing a suite of stories creation is as trivial as a Javascript implementation that takes less than a few hours to implement with a dedicated resource and even the load test can be completed in less than 5 business days to ensure a disruption-free launch. 

A public launch of your site with the first suite of stories can happen as early as 2 weeks after you start your planning, if you have your ducks in a row and the tools necessary and set up.  

Step 3 — Story Suite Optimization:

This is similar to any content property’s content launch needs. For example: we are thrilled to launch our very own blog — Firewords –this week, and we paid a lot of attention to building out a repository of content ready to go live for your audience. 

Web stories are no exception to that rule.

In a similar vein, your first 30 suite of web stories is all it’d take to kick-off a publishing cadence that’d eventually require frequent content optimization, especially in the first few weeks. Once you’re off to the races, you’ll need to throw in a combination of performance feedback and placement optimization of the content on your website and your story feed itself. 

Step 4 — Story Suite Monetization:

Finally, once your web stories are published and reach critical mass with your audience, you’d want to start thinking of how to kick-start sales enablement for direct Story ads sales and programmatic ad stack integration. As a brand or publisher, there is a dearth of monetization tools available easily. Once your media outlet starts building a suite of web stories (either from scratch or repurposed content), you’ll recognize that you have unleashed the most engaging content from your library outside of closed ecosystems to newer audiences across the web who might not have been exposed to the exciting content your brand or publication is creating. 

As you’re probably aware, story suites are perfectly tuned for storytelling that improve your viewers’ experience by most importantly increasing session length, organic search traffic and video views, but also reducing your bounce rate! A win on every metric that matters for you as a publisher. 

These are just the first four steps on helping you become a Web Stories Publisher in the shortest time possible. We are always curious to hear more about your experience switching to a stories experience on your publishing website. Feel free to leave us a comment on LinkedIn, or Twitter

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