After concerns were raised that publishers were excessively promoting the use of their digital editions to fatten up their circulation figures, ABC have decided to further define their definition of a digital newspaper edition.
While the digital editions phenomenon has been around for a number of years, the arrival of the iPad has catapulted digital editions into the limelight. What is concerning advertisers is that some newspapers are showing increases of 70% over a one year period.
Under the new regulations if a newspaper has a paid for print edition, in order to have the circulation figures from their digital editions added to their overall circulation figure then the publisher will have to provide proof that digital readers paid to read the digital edition.
These regulations will not only apply to newspapers. ABC will bring digital magazines under closer scrutiny also. To read more on this story click here.
As of yet there has been no word on how the ABC plan to regulate the figures submitted by free digital editions and the cost of these audits are expensive. Perhaps there are other methods that a publisher can use to provide their advertisers with market validated stats on circulation. One method that springs to mind is event tracking.
In November 2008 Google released Event Tracking, an add-on to Google Analytics that allowed actions from within Flash applications to be recorded and posted to your Google Analytics account . Google is notoriously strict about their analytics and the consequences of been caught ‘beefing up’ your stats unfairly on google is far severe than be caught out by ABC as you will be blacklisted from Google’s Search Engines. You will be made invisible to the world.
We have Event tracking integrated into our digital edition software. The great thing about it is that it can tell you so much more than just circulation. You can see what the most read pages are, what keywords are been searched for the most, and most importantly you can provide exact stats on the effectiveness of the advertisers listing in your publication by monitoring the number of zooms into the ad and the number of click-throughs to the advertisers website.
With Google Reporting tools you will easily be able to provide your advertisers with market validated stats that carry as much weight in the online community as ABC audits, if not more. While ABC have frozen their audit charges for 2011, its still not cheap. Compare that to Google Analytics which are free and can be accessed and compiled within minutes.