What Can We Learn from the Huffington Post? How to Engage Your Co-Creators!


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I have to admit that I was disappointed to hear that Arriana Huffington has “sold out” to AOL. In less than six years, The Huffington Post became an admirable, vibrant, and profitable ecosystem in one of the industries that is most under siege: newspaper publishing.


The Huffington Post is a classic example of how to innovate correctly! Start with a clean slate. Make different assumptions from those that incumbents are making. Deeply understand the motivations of all of your stakeholders—including the members of your ecosystem you are counting on to create value.

Arriana Huffington was the first publisher to truly understand that there’s a group of influential and insightful people who are eager for an audience and a dialogue. The Huffington Post was carefully crafted as a platform to attract powerful and articulate voices.

The HuffPo’s success as a profitable and influential online newspaper and media magnet is impressive. Perhaps even more impressive is the fact that the HuffPo’s brand has gained a respect and a cachet among newsmakers that is equivalent to that of news organizations that have been in business for decades, even centuries.

Seven Useful Strategies for Interactive Content Providers (Yes, You!)

As I peeled back the layers to understand what the HuffPo did so well, I discovered seven critical strategies that have paid off beautifully. At least six of them are relevant to just about any organization that disseminates content online—which is almost every company on the planet! What’s at the core of the HuffPo’s success? Respect for its audience, its contributors, its readers, and its commenters. Respect for people’s time and respect for their interests and needs.

Will the HuffPo Ecosystem Disintegrate?

What will happen to the Huffington Post as it becomes one of a constellation of interactive content properties owned by AOL and managed by Arriana Huffington? Will HuffPo bloggers and commenters continue to contribute for free? It depends on how well Arriana Huffington can continue to mobilize her huge network of self-interested contributors. Read my take and tell me what you think!

Why the Huffington Post Is Successful
Engaging Your Audience as Active Contributors and Promoters Was Baked into Its DNA
By Patricia B. Seybold, CEO and Sr. Consultant, February 17, 2011

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Patricia Seybold
With 30 years of experience consulting to customer-centric executives in technology-aggressive businesses across many industries, Patricia Seybold is a visionary thought leader with the unique ability to spot the impact that technology enablement and customer behavior will have on business trends very early. Seybold provides customer-centric executives within Fortune 1 companies with strategic insights, technology guidance, and best practices.


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