They said print publishing was dead and that the newest mode of media was in the digital sector. It’s true that media has shifted from the hands of publishing giants to digital nomads from traditional names down to remote bloggers with cult-like followings.
But what no one really expected was the next step…newspapers 2.0.
Newspapers are making a comeback, but now custom-tailored to the appetites of the individual, with content being as unique as the reader itself.
Why are newspapers back? I would say that the approach of well-organized easily digested compact content is even more favorable in a time when we’re overwhelmed with data across multiple platforms. We want data and we consume it in record quantities, but we still need a systemized way of consuming it. Newspapers offered that; now, newspapers 2.0 master that demand.
Paper.li Lets You be at the Publisher’s Helm
I first came across Paper.li by a Twitter follower. I clicked on a quick link, was ushered to his online newspaper and was instantly captivated.
The content was organized, vividly designed and relevant to my interest. I instantly become a Paper.li fan. Paper.li calls itself a “content curation service” that lets users publish digital newspapers based on preferred topics. It takes URLs from follower tweets, extracts URL content and publishes a paper that’s already organized based on content/categories. It’s easily searchable, and content curation can be customized per your preferences via either keywords, hashtags or users.
The idea capitalizes on the digital revolution by pairing Scribd’s publishing capabilities with the Twitter and Facebook data filter provided by HardlyWork.In. Paper.li’s founder Eduard Lambelet believes that “mainstream media can’t cover everything really. It’s extremely difficult to search for this kind of content top to bottom. You really need to have small curators [and] small editors in chief — millions of them covering content.”
Paper.li currently publishes over 300,000 digital newspapers, has 1.5 million monthly visitors and just received an additional $2 million in development funding this year. Clearly, this is a great tool that’s just going to get better.
Tweeted Times Curates Follower Tweets for Customized Content
Paper.li’s competitors include iPad accessible Tweeted Times, which generates a newspaper-like interface on web-sourced stories by people you follow. But unlike Paper.li where the audience is your consumer group, Tweeted Times works best for your own usage first, curating a customized newspaper that meets your interests.
And this is really where the future of media and marketing is headed. This is a lot like what we saw with the blogosphere explosion that catered to niche interests and where bloggers commanded more credibility and attention than traditional media outlets and reporters. In the same way, every aspect of media is becoming more customized to our interests and our “tribe.” And here is where marketing in these new channels becomes even more crucial, since you’re now catering to a select and possibly very large group that all fall within your target range – unlike old venues where perhaps a small margin of the audience would be a part of your consumer group.
Going back to Tweeted Times, it works like Paper.li by taking the most important information from your Twitter feed so you don’t miss anything you should have or wanted to know. Your newspaper also gets rebuilt hourly so it’s always fresh and up-to-date. You can also create a newspaper based on any topics, or Twitter ‘lists’ that you might have.
What’s the Difference Between Paper.li and Tweeted Times?
While they serve the same purpose, the two have different functionalities that might or might not cater to your interests. Paper.li allows for colors, pictures, subsections and article tweets via Twitter. Tweeted Times is colorless, has few pictures and a simpler layout. However, unlike Paper.li, there are no ads and each article can be Tweeted and/or liked on Facebook.