The stealth success of Apple News

Adam Tinworth
Adam Tinworth

I woke to unexpectedly happy news this morning – one of my (meagre) blog posts from last week had killed it on traffic:

Siri seduction - traffic

That’s a normal week’s worth of traffic on a single post. Not bad.

And I was completely unaware until that point.

Why? Because all the traffic was on Apple News, and I wasn’t aware of that until I got the weekly analytics newsletter from them.

The secret news channel success

This reinforces my long-held view that Apple News is the quiet success story of the emerging news formats. It might lack the attention in the journalism media that Facebook’s instant articles and Google’s AMP have received, but it’s slowly bringing the numbers in.

Perhaps we’ve all under-estimated the power of a big icon saying “News” on millions of devices…

I’ve touched on this before, and a discussion with a client in consumer publishing last week reinforced this. They put one of their titles on Apple News, after some encouragement from Apple, and got more than double the traffic they expected, with some significant monetisation opportunities.

It’ll be no surprise to you that I’ve been poking around in my Apple News analytics more deeply since that arrived, and I like what I see – with one notable exception, summed up by this graph:

Apple news demographics

Less than 10% of my Apple News readers are female? Is that a quirk of the platform, or my subscriber base? That certainly bears more investigation.

In the meantime, if you’re on an iOS device (on iOS9 and later), you can subscribe to One Man & His Blog in Apple News. Women particularly appreciated…

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Adam is a lecturer, trainer and writer. He's been a blogger for over 20 years, and a journalist for more than 30. He lectures on audience strategy and engagement at City, University of London.