MSN gets into the upswing of things

January was a record month for MSN.co.nz, with some of its new editorial offerings, particularly its healthy living portal and virtual sports category, bringing in a slew of online punters.

MSN notched up its first two-million page impressions day last month and collected 44.3 million page impressions, up 16 percent on December ‘09 and 32 percent year-on-year to January 2010. Site visitors are also increasing, averaging 3.4 million for the last three-month period to January, compared to 2.4 million for the same period 12 months previous, an increase of 42 percent.

MSN’s entertainment and travel categories captured a significant chunk of MSN.co.nz activity, and combined recorded 13.2 million page impressions for the month. Entertainment seekers are also staying longer, spending an average of 3.08 minutes at MSN’s entertainment category Entertainment Fix – on average 20 percent longer than December category visitors.

MSN New Zealand business manager Liz Fraser says category additions were behind the continued upswing.

Recent site additions include sports category MSN Virtual Sports and lifestyle category Health Hub, which provides instant online access to a comprehensive healthy living guide.

The latter, says Fraser, is a huge opportunity, with Roy Morgan research showing that 60 percent of Kiwis aspire to lose weight and two thirds prefer healthy snacks.

“The appetite for information guiding healthier decisions is huge. We’re covering the spectrum of health and lifestyle issues, which will further increase visitor traffic to MSN Lifestyle, already one of our most popular categories, regularly attracting 220,000 unique browsers monthly.”

She says this keen interest in health is a big opportunity for online publishers, when online is increasingly the first place people look for answers.

“We’ve gone broad and deep and approached the topic from many angles, including news stories, expert advice, tools, and galleries. It’s a significant resource,” Fraser says.

She says health-minded consumers are experiential, with 62 percent (according to Roy Morgan research) professing to trying new types of food when they see them, and active, with 71 percent regularly participating in sports and leisure activities.

“With the right pitch advertisers should make a big impression,” she says.


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