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Compact Vs Broadsheet

Here’s an interesting one: Delving back to early 2007, this chart shows the number of broadsheet verses compact editions of the Irish Independent Actively Purchased. The actively purchased is used as I wanted to strip out bulks and see if the buying habits of the ‘hand in pockets’ population were swaying towards or away to a particular format. Non bulk sales of the compact are 81,352 (61%) whilst sales of the broadsheet are 51,186 copies per day. Broadsheet numbers are down 10,000 copies whilst the compact is up 4,000 over the two years. So there is a definitive shift towards the compact. Considering that the first full audited 6 month period from June to December 2004, the compact was showing about 40% of the actively purchased sales it shows that there is an ever growing appetite for the smaller version.

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JNIR 2009

The latest JNIR arrived showing the web audiences of the participating websites. It shows that, out of the websites surveyed, Yahoo was the highest placed. Universe 3,526 100% Yahoo.ie 635 18 Eircom.net 413 12 RTE.ie 206 6 Irishjobs.ie 154 4 Golden Pages.ie 147 4 Ticketmaster.ie 140 4 Irishtimes.com 132 4 Independent.ie 132 4 Entertainment.ie 102 3 Myhome.ie 99 3 Breakingnews.ie 94 3 Irishexaminer.com 52 1 Pigsback.com 33 1 NightCourses.com 23 1 Hotpress.com 18 1 DayCourses.com 15 0 At least the JNIR (whilst not perfect) does go some way to try and get some demographic data into the area of Irish Internet Search. Google’s Ad Planner data have possibly a more accurate picture of the top websites. Oddly enough (!) they are all too modest to reveal their own figures in their own data, but it still gives you an indication of the volumes going to each website. Portals, Social websites and News are the strong candidates there. Whereas Google would have some great data on the entire web, they certainly aren’t disclosing it in the Ad Planner data. Site Past Month Audience Unique Users % yahoo.com 990,000 37.80% live.com 920,000 35.10% facebook.com 830,000 31.60% msn.com 760,000 28.90% bebo.com 750,000 28.50%…

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Public Relations Firms and SEO

For a business that extols the virtues of publicity, the PR industry as a whole is a little shy in self promotion. I had occasion to research a small fraction of the industry some time back and I found it seriously lacking in the search engine results. I looked at some fairly standard industry public relations keywords to see how individual firms rated against them in results. Now, I would like to state that whilst the industry may seem in the face on it fairly generic it’s actually quite fragmented. Some firms specialise in specific narrowly focused areas and therefore would not show up in results for broader terms. I looked at 30 keywords and at over 100 public relations firms to see how each of the companies rated against those search terms – up to the first 50 results only. To be quiet frank, I think that looking at the first fifty results was being particularly generous indeed. Only twenty nine of the 110 companies looked at managed to rank in a Google search for any of the 30 terms. I thought given the nature of their industry that the firms would be suing the internet a little more effectively….

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Google Search Results Related Searches.

Late March, Google announced that it was going to make two variations to its search engine results, the first of which I will deal with here. Herein, at the bottom of the results pages, Google will give you ‘more useful related searches’ to the expression that you have just searched for. They quote that their algorithms “understand” the search term and can therefore throw up some useful, related search expressions. It’s a handy feature and it would be interesting to know more about the relative strengths of the ‘related searches’ to the original search. For example, I searched the term ‘Bebo’ and was returned these as ‘related’ searches: On the face of it, they all seem very ‘handy’ alternative expressions. But I question why these particular expressions were chosen. If you look at these in the Google Keywords Tool you get their search volumes: Bebo Stuff at 590 seems relatively weak in comparison to the other suggestions. Working with Google’s keyword tool can show you ideas based on the keyword of “Bebo”. It suggested phrases (and their search volumes) like Bebo Page (33,100) and Bebo Sign in (201,000). Frankly I would think that these might have made the list instead of…

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Seriously – it’s no problem

I know the issues involved in securing servers –externally and internally, so I have some small measure of sympathy on that front for companies that get walloped. The watch phrase is ‘prevention is better than the cure’ – no doubt about that. But sometimes I really give up on people, especially when you are trying to help. I registered on a website some time back, the business is (being specifically vague) a ‘brokerage’. I had reason to land back on their site to check on something. The information part of their site is through registration only and when I landed on the registration page: It was the Chrome browser that threw the warning up and, as a matter of interest it did not appear in Firefox. The warning was because the registration page had a link to a site that hosted malware, which I found very curious. Anyway, that aside, I thought that it wasn’t particularly inviting and certainly projected the completely wrong image for a professional company. I peeked at their source code and there was indeed a link to the aforementioned website. I suggest that the site (or page) may have been compromised and the link injected. Anyway,…

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Newspaper Articles and Affiliate advertising

Here’s one that should have been filed under ‘morality or otherwise’. Bizarrely, this all started when I saw a story that grabbed my attention on semoz entitled “How I got a link on CNN“. It was a very enticing headline with shades of espionage and “shaken not stirred”. But alas, it was nothing more than honest to goodness hard work and recognition in a particular field of the Author that got him the article and the link. Anyway, from that article –  one link lead to another and on to a piece, the thrust of this article was about a journo allegedly accepting a ‘bribe’ to get a web link into a story in a national paper. That I will park there until there is a little more evidence and hard fact than was contained in a particularly speculative story. But it did lead further to some interesting information regarding what some might see as the sharper end of practice in a particular newspapers/newspaper website. The Daily Telegraph ran an article on March 7th entitled “Top 50 internet websites to save you money”. The piece goes on to further split the fifty into smaller subcategories Top five Comparison websites or…

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Bel Tel going compact!

From tomorrow the Bel Tel is going down the compact road – well continuing down the compact road. They currently have a compact edition for their early morning print run, which then reverts back to a broadsheet for the later editions. The compact then takes over for the Saturday edition in total. Within the early morning edition of 18,333 compact copies, 6,380 are ‘free copy pickup’. The Monday to Friday broadsheet does 51,200 on top of that. The Saturday currently edition does 56,300. (all ABC Jun Dec 2008)

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Morning Newspapers Circulations

The rise and rise of the slow decline of Morning Newspaper Circulations! Without the introduction of the Irish Daily Mail, the market would be down just over 68,000 (or 11%) in four years. Taking the Mail into account its down 10,000 copies in the same period reaching the heady heights of 713,000 in July – Dec ’07, the morning market is now back below early 2004 level

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Close the Door please!

I am always amazed at some really sloppy antics, whether by the site owners or by their web developers. One of the main culprits (which brings me some moments of mild amusements) is a business leaving their web statistics out there for all to see. Not that the information therein is massively sensitive – but it’s sloppy and can benefit others. There are particular statistical application that would tend to future on the offenders list. Business is tight and business is hard to get. So why do companies insist in giving their competition an insight into their web business: pages viewed, referring sites, keywords and phrases used to get to the site! All this information is useful to your competition or someone working with the competition. Below are pages, indexed by Google and Co, up there for the world to see, to study and in some places benefit from. Why tell the competition which site gives you the most referrals or which keywords are the best for traffic? All that’s going to happen there is that the competition will use this to their advantage. Shop on Grafton Street had a good December and the site was busy January and February:…

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Irish Newspaper Readership

The JNRS survey hit the streets and made for some fairly depressing reading in some quarters. Overall readership of newspapers was down only marginally with the morning titles gaining slightly. Notably it’s the first time that the full figures of the Free newspapers came into the survey.  It shows that, after two and a half years, they have a decent readership in the morning and perhaps a slight issue with loyalty to any particular title which is understandable. The ‘fear and loathing’ that was bellowed from some corners about the erosion of the established titles to the new freshet entrants looks like, on these set of figures, to have been unnecessary. In the Morning market The Mail would seem to have gained at the expense certainly of the Irish Independent and to a lesser extent the Examiner.   The Examiner having a torrid time in these figures, something that is not fully reflected as dramatically in their circulation figures over the same period which has fallen about 5%. However, newspaper circulation figures and newspaper readership results have always been strange bedfellows and I am sure, that like many a newspaper management team in the past faced with the exact same…

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Sunday Circulations

On the Sunday side the market is also showing a downward trend having lost 69,000 copies in the last four years and or 11% decline in total. January 2004 the market stood at 1.274m copies every Sunday, it’s now to just a shade above 1.20m copies every Sunday.  Over the four years some titles have bucked the overall newspaper tend completely – most notably the Sunday World where circulations have grown by nearly 17,000 copies. On the other end of the scale – the Irish People circulation is down a staggering 92% to 26,847 copies every Sunday. Surely they are near (if not at) the point where those levels of sales make it a completely uneconomical exercise. Or perhaps they are happy to “pay” for circulation with the ROI edition contributing over 4% of their over circulation.

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Free Newspapers

After over 3 years locked in mortal combat, it now looks like the Herald AM and its rival Metro will be combining their operations and forming a new free newspaper imaginatively called the Metro Herald. Considering the initial acrimony between the two papers and their respective shareholders, it just shows how an ‘economic downturn’ will focus the mind and reminds me of that nice expression “the pockets thought the hands were mad”. The registered vehicle for Metro is a company called Fortune Green. The Irish Times has a 45% interest in that company, Associated have another 45% and Metro International had the remaining 10%. According to the Irish Times – who broke the story – Metro international will ‘exit’ the business, but the new phoenix type newspaper will retain at least some of its heritage. According to the report, the new business shareholding will be one third each for Independent News and Media, The Irish Times and Associated Newspapers. Whilst the rivalry between Independent and The Irish Times has always been based squarely on Queensberry rules, the relationship between The Independent and Associated is more akin to the rules of the WWF Smackdown. But I suppose in this climate – “needs…

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Sunday Circulations

On the Sunday side the market is also showing a downward trend having lost 69,000 copies in the last four years and or 11% decline in total. January 2004 the market stood at 1.274m copies every Sunday, it’s now to just a shade above 1.20m copies every Sunday.  Over the four years some titles have bucked the overall newspaper tend completely – most notably the Sunday World where circulations have grown by nearly 17,000 copies. On the other end of the scale – the Irish People circulation is down a staggering 92% to 26,847 copies every Sunday. Surely they are near (if not at) the point where those levels of sales make it a completely uneconomical exercise. Or perhaps they are happy to “pay” for circulation with the ROI edition contributing over 4% of their over circulation.

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Irish Newspaper Circulations 2008

The picture for the newspaper circulations still looks bleak. Some papers really struggled in the past twelve months and some managed to completely buck the trend, with very few titles staying in positive territory. In volume terms the most notable loss comes from the News of the World dropping 17,345 copies every Sunday. This is followed by the Sunday Independent shaving 12,000 off its sale. Bucking the trend was The Sunday World adding 1,400 copies. All the morning titles took a hit, with the ‘tabloids’ taking the brunt of the falls. Their share of the morning market is about 40% but the three papers accounted for over 60% of the drop. The evening market, being the evening market, showed further declines. Whilst the numbers look small in places, you have to take the bigger picture those declines in circulation at around 94,000 in total represent a drop of about ?28m at the till per annum.   July/Dec July/Dec Diff Sunday Independent 282,459 270,362 -12,097 Sunday World 283,801 285,214 1,413 Sunday Tribune 70,058 66,672 -3,386 Sunday Business Post 53,871 54,993 1,122 IoS/Daily Mail 123,919 125,420 1,501 Daily Star Sunday 64,052 59,898 -4,154 Irish News of the World 156,666 139,321 -17,345 Irish…

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Localised Keyword Spelling – Whiskey

There is no such thing as "Irish Whisky", there is, in fact, only "Irish Whiskey" – to the purist! The Irish and American spelling of the liquid fermented from grain comes with an ‘e’, whereas all the other countries brewing the liquid, like Scotland and Canada, drop the ‘e’. This may seem a little trivial or something that only comes up only in a pub quiz – but it has other knock on effects. Here are the keyword volumes for derivatives of both terms. The volumes are for February:   Approx Search  Volume Worldwide Approx Search  Volume USA Scotch Whiskey ** 49500 33100 Scotch Whisky  90500 40500 Irish Whisky ** 14800 9900 Irish Whiskey  110000 90500   The keywords marked with the ** don’t ‘officially’ exist to the purist or indeed the manufacturers in certain regions – but as you can see there are still huge search volumes for the term Scotch Whiskey. Most of those searches, some 67%, come from the USA where the spelling of the amber liquid would be "whiskey". They are searching for a Scottish distilled beverage, but using their own familiar and localised spelling. Likewise, on the home front, most of the searches for an…