Of Pew’s three P’s, “personalize” got least notice
The recent release of the study “Understanding the Participatory News Consumer” by the Project for Excellence in Journalism and Pew Internet Center received a ton of coverage and commentary. The report cited three P’s that are important to evolving news consumption: “People’s relationship to news is becoming portable, personalized, and participatory.”
But of the three, most of the attention focused on portable and participatory. No doubt that mobile already is a big part of news consumption and will keep growing. Consumers interacting with and even “remixing” the news also will make for some intriguing developments. We, for obvious reasons, think the third P – personalized – deserves more attention.
Most coverage picked up a single stat on personalization: That 28% have customized their home page to include news from their favorite sources and topics. A more telling statistic was largely overlooked: “40% of internet users say an important feature of a news website to them is the ability to customize the news they get from the site.”
Unfortunately, what users say they want and what they actually do is often at odds. They say they want personalization, but then few take the time to make the choices and select their topics of interest. That’s why Newstogram’s approach of implicit personalization based on the stories each user is reading is so valuable.
And personalization goes hand-in-hand with the other P’s. As more news consumption occurs on smaller, portable devices, the need for personalization becomes more important. And giving users more news that is personally relevant gives them more incentive to participate with the news.