The Herald shifts into digital high gear

Advertisers are demanding new ways to connect with audiences in the changing digital landscape, and the Herald is focused on developing new digital-based advertising products to make the most of the growing online and mobile audience.

The Herald’s readership is strong across all mediums. Nielsen’s latest newspaper readership* numbers show the overall Herald brand audience continued its growth, increasing three percent over the March 2014 quarter and 30 percent over the prior year. 

Digital growth in particular has seen the Herald’s mobile site and apps reach their highest ever readership levels, in the last 12 months they have seen increases of 98 percent and 31 percent respectively.  Engagement in the digital platform remains incredibly strong; readers are spending 5.03 minutes with the Herald per session – that’s 65 percent stronger** than the average for competitor news sites. A key driver of that success is the  continuous development of the Herald’s digital offerings.  

While these audience numbers are important, there are also interesting points to glean from a further look into the data. Among them:

  • engagement has grown;
  • the quality of the audience is strong; and
  • the Herald audience has grown across all platforms from the last quarter measured.

In-Read Video

Released earlier this year as an alternative way to play videos of any length, In-Read video gives advertisers another channel to put their content in front of readers.

The difference for In-Read video content is that it no longer needs to be confined to the video pages to be seen. It can sit within an article on the Herald site and play automatically when viewed by the reader. The audio plays only when a viewer places the cursor over the video, which can be of any length – meaning the ad units are an unobtrusive and flexible format. In-Read video is particularly good for advertisers looking for a different short video and television commercial platform, or to showcase longer content like movie trailers.

Mobile geo-targeting

Geo-targeting within mobile banner ads is something the Herald has been offering for a while, but now it’s able to offer the product to a wider scale of clients. 

“The beauty of mobile geo-targeting is being able to offer bespoke packages. The local butcher might need to cover a smaller area whereas the local car dealership can spread its arms wider – and the Herald can cater to this,” says APN head of digital Spencer Bailey. “The barrier to entry is low but the impact for the client can be huge.” 

The ability to target customers within a certain radius has been particularly popular in real estate. Agencies have found the ability to talk to local audiences extremely useful for both brand awareness and foot traffic to open homes. The difference in effectiveness between geo-located ads and regular banner ads is the ability to talk to the people in a specific area – and often being the only ones talking in that space.

Offering the best of both worlds

When Foodhub was integrated into the Bite website, it created a destination for food-related content for Kiwis to find recipes, kitchen tips, competitions and other related content. 

The integration brought the best of both worlds together; the loyal Bite audience and the national reach of the Herald to make Bite the home of food in New Zealand.

The Bite website is now updated with new content the same day the magazine is published, as well as fresh content to extend the Bite experience throughout the week. The redesign brought the site in line with the Herald website, giving more space to advertise as well as the ability to extend campaigns to both platforms. The integrated offering enables conversations with the Bite audience throughout its entire week of baking and meal preparation.

Bite’s online transition and Property Picks are some of the Herald’s digital offerings

Property Picks

Bayleys partnered exclusively with the Herald to create a new product that would showcase its clients’ properties to the Herald’s quality audience. The outcome was Property Picks, an ad unit housed on the Herald home page that rotates through an ever-changing collection of the finest Bayleys properties from across the country. 

Since its launch the Pacific Area Newspaper Publishers Association Award (PANPA)-nominated Property Picks has resulted in a lift to Bayleys website traffic. In the eight months since the launch, Bayleys has seen over a million click-throughs to its site from the ad unit.

Property Picks has given Bayleys an interesting point of difference in the real estate market.


*Nielsen Media Research, Consumer & Media Insights: Release period, Q2 2013 – Q1 2014, previous release period, Q1 – Q4 2013. 

**Online Audience: Mobile; Omniture, April 2013 vs April 2012. Nielsen Netview April 2014, Nielsen Market Intelligence April 2014 (average session duration)- competitor news sites are defined as; tvnz/news.co.nz, stuff.co.nz, 3news.co.nz, yahoo/news.co.nz, news.msn.co.nz

For more information on the recent Nielsen readership release please contact Brad Glading [email protected]. And for more information on The Herald’s digital offerings please contact Tama Sefuiva [email protected]

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