Modern day newsrooms are a lot of things: Chaotic, noisy, intense and a little stressful. Not often do they take the form of crash pad. The Huffington Post swapped its daily digs Wednesday for the ornate wood panelled surroundings of Kensington Palace’s Wren Room, with its landlady — Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Middleton — in the editor’s chair.
The Huffington Post approached the duchess in the summer about guest editing the site for a day in which the editorial focus was entirely on children’s mental health.
“She’s one of the very few powerful young women who can lead a global conversation on this,” said Stephen Hull, editor-in-chief of The Huffington Post U.K, who joked he was worried for his job after having spent the morning overseeing the duchess.
It’s a cause that’s close to Middleton’s heart, having campaigned for mental health since 2011. She also acts as a patron to several related charities. For Huff Post’s “Young Minds Matter” project, she gave input into the content, commissioned pieces, including one from Michelle Obama, and enrolled charities for support. Pieces included “How art therapy is saving children with mental health issues” and Huff Post-commissioned reports stating “A third of parents fear they will look bad if their child has a mental health problem.”
#YoungMindsMatter has been trending on Twitter in the U.K. and the U.S., and has been mentioned nearly 11,000 times at time of writing, 96 percent of the time on Twitter, according to data from social media analytics firm Crimson Hexagon.
“The distribution element of what newsrooms do is so important now we don’t have newsagents or paper boys,” said Hull, who mentioned that Facebook and Twitter were the cornerstones to its distribution plans because of the audience size there. Globally on Facebook The Huffington Post has 6 million Likes and nearly 7 million followers on Twitter.
Not putting all of its eggs in one social media basket is a deliberate strategy at the Huff Post, said Hull. (Not a bad one either, considering that Facebook recently “accidentally” blocked the raunchy satirical British comic Viz from its site briefly before reinstating it recently.) In fact, data from analytics firm SimilarWeb shows that the publisher is relying less on Facebook referrals, when it comes to desktop traffic anyway. A comparison with January 2015 shows that the share of Huff Post desktop traffic to its U.K. site from Facebook has decreased by 30 percent from 739,000 to 517,000.
The Middleton project and the site’s focus on mental health in children both shines a light on a sensitive subject and also serves as a bit of service journalism: an amphasis of the project is to show how people can get help, and is borne out of Arianna Huffington’s wider good-news What’s Working initiative. “It felt like what we have been trying to achieve in the last four years really came together today,” said Hull.
Can Niche build the next decentralized social platform? Here’s why it matters
Niche is a decentralized online marketplace and social networking platform rolled into one. Unlike other social apps, it doesn't carry ads and it doesn't harvest user data.
Member ExclusiveDigiday+ Research deep dive: YouTube investments pay off for publishers’ brands, revenues
In this final installment of Digiday+ Research's deep dive into how publishers are using social media platforms, we're covering how publishers are investing time and money on YouTube -- and how that's translating to their revenues and brands.
ANA’s programmatic buying guide aims to shine a light on murky inefficiencies for CMOs
The Association of National Advertisers released a guide on programmatic media buying that aims to save marketers billions of dollars a year.
SponsoredWhat gaming habits reveal about media consumption
Jordan Shlachter, head of research, Activision Blizzard Media Entertainment choices have never been more abundant, and gaming has emerged as one of the biggest winners in the battle for audiences’ attention. While gaming’s exponential growth has been well documented — there are currently nearly 3 billion gamers worldwide spanning a diverse set of demographics, interests […]
How The Washington Post’s Joy Robins is using lessons from 2020 to handle the current economic slowdown
Joy Robins' role as CRO looks different than it did a year ago, but in a volatile economy, a media company's revenue sources are subject to change as well.
How media companies like The New York Times, BuzzFeed and Gannett are managing costs in an economic downturn
The New York Times, BuzzFeed, Gannett and IAC are identifying areas to cut costs, from marketing budgets to hiring slowdowns and layoffs.