AOL’s masterplan to become the king of web content is now a hot piece of shareable content itself.
Titled The AOL Way: Content, Product, Media Engineering, and Revenue Management, the leaked strategy sets out exactly how AOL will generate content and make calculated decisions on which stories will draw the most clicks at any given moment.
‘Content strategy’ is a booming area in digital business these days, even if some high-profile commentators have mocked the term.
AOL’s strategy breaks down the aims of their content factory into hard-line nuggets, such as “Each article should be profitable and generate at least 7,000 page views per story”.
It describes the tools they will use to create content and measure performance.
It explains how they will use the web’s biggest ‘influencers’ to ensure AOL’s content spreads like wildfire through social media.
On the technical side, it states that each new product must be specified in terms of how it will “beat the internet”.
The strategy sets out that ‘organic’ traffic (from search engines, social sharing, bookmarking and partner sites) must be greater than any of AOL’s competitors, and then paid-for traffic (from PPC search marketing and advertising) will take AOL up to 60% higher traffic levels than its competitors.
This is editorial policy in the commercial internet age: Show me the clicks, baby!