The Mario Blog
Digital audiences look forward to the end of the session

TAKEAWAY: The Financial Times is on to something with its digital offerings that range from the dynamic to the static, recognizing that users want constant updates, but also that curated edition with a clear ending. PLUS: Estimating newspaper circulation gets tougher

TAKEAWAY: The Financial Times is on to something with its digital offerings that range from the dynamic to the static, recognizing that users want constant updates, but also that curated edition with a clear ending. PLUS: Estimating newspaper circulation gets tougher

blog post image

As a media observer, I always keep an eye on whatever the Financial Times is doing, and not just because those guys in the peach-colored paper land that is the FT provide us with a pretty complete daily report on business, not to mention a fun, lean back Weekend edition, but, because they have a keen eye and ear for what their readers and users want. And they apply it.

Take, for example, the FT’s latest changes in its digital offerings. Of course, it continues to offer round the clock updated news through its digital platforms, but what is more interesting to us is the editors’ recognition of two things that I adhere to myself:

-A large portion of the digital audience hop from one platform to the other throughout the day, smartphones, computers, tablets. During the weekend, that may include sitting with good old printed newspaper editions.

Indeed, the FT’s tablet and mobile traffic is “pretty much on a par” with desktop usage at the weekend.

-People want their time with these digital platforms, whichever it is, to have a beginning, a middle and an end. The bottomless barrel that is an online edition is NOT what we want all day long, not with our smartphones and tablets, for sure. I equate it to a workout in the gym: you are happy to know that it will come to an end, and there is that satisfaction when it does. A feeling of fulfillment.

Tracking these reader habits informed the web app’s redesign, particularly the decision to offer static and dynamic versions to be switched between at will.

This from managing director Rob Grimshaw

“From the very early days, we’ve noticed that people like this sense of a finite read. Completion is a big thing for people, and in common with most publishers, we’re not great at giving people a sense of completion with our desktop experience.”

This means that we will see more of the FT combination of static and curated/finite smartphone and tablet editions. And, in fact, in several of the projects that we are currently engaged with, this is what we are recommending and creating.

It is not just about lean forward and lean back, it is also, and very importantly so, “happy to start, happy to finish”.

For more information:

Financial Times: ‘There is no drawback to working in HTML5’

The Economist goes after college students

It is a complicated world, we know that. It can be even more complicated for those young college kids going to class, worried about student loans, and making sure they major in careers with good job prospects.

Now The Economist, that sort of indispensable tool for anyone who wants to keep informed (regardless of age or station in life) is spending $1 million to spread out the word: Dare 2 Go Deep with The Economist.

The Economist also knows that these digital natives may only be interested in the digital editions of the magazine that calls itself a newspaper.

Read more here:

Daily newspaper circulation: who and what counts?

These two pieces deal directly with this important issue about newspaper readership (and measuring it), in the days of news consumption via the media quartet.

Daily newspaper circulation totals ‘do not capture the full story’ anymore


Even at the great majority of papers still publishing print every day, Thursday and Friday totals are likely to be far higher than Monday and Tuesday since weekend subscriptions have become a standard offering.

When it comes to who’s reading newspapers, whose count counts?


Industry banking on digital readers, but it can’t agree how to measure their numbers.

Fun with responsive design

Don’t miss this!

Responsive design in print

Responsive design in print

Here’s a nice take on responsive design from the students of Helsinki University of Technology, created in response to Finnish newspaper Helsingin Sanomat’s change of format from broadsheet to tabloid.

TheMarioBlog post #1250
Blog Post05.23.2017—1am
Millennials and their obsession with their phones—publishers, take note!
Blog Post05.22.2017—1am
Spiegel Daily: the German magazine’s new product
Blog Post05.19.2017—1am
Another day, another Trump bombshell for the front pages
Blog Post05.18.2017—1am
From digital to print: another example
Blog Post05.16.2017—6am
Trump bombshell news lands on the front pages
Blog Post—1am
For The Guardian: one contributor at a time
Blog Post05.15.2017—1am
The New York Times banks on kids: never too early!
Blog Post05.12.2017—1am
Good guide to e-newsletters that catch the reader’s attention
Blog Post05.10.2017—2pm
The firing of the FBI Director on Page One
Blog Post—1am
Sarasota Herald Tribune gets new look
Blog Post05.08.2017—8am
The Macron victory in France through the front pages
Blog Post—1am
Tony Awards: And the winner so far…..
Blog Post05.05.2017—1am
And now Dubai has its own font!
Blog Post05.04.2017—7am
The NYTimes’ Sketchbook: great visual solutions
Blog Post05.03.2017—1am
The luxury of paper
Blog Post05.02.2017—1am
Trump: 100 days and the front pages
Blog Post04.28.2017—2am
And now the annual report via Virtual Reality
Blog Post04.27.2017—2am
Digital down market? Yep, it’s the HuffPost’
Blog Post04.26.2017—2am
When digital products transition to print
Blog Post04.24.2017—9pm
Agustin Edwards: Death of a media patriarch
Blog Post04.22.2017—8am
The best designed newspapers in the world
Blog Post04.21.2017—1am
It’s Allium, Cyrus Highsmith’s new font creation
Blog Post04.20.2017—1am
For mobile ads, too, scrolling is the way to go
Blog Post04.19.2017—1am
NYT: Linear, visual storytelling at its best
Blog Post04.18.2017—1am
Gulf News: the evolution of sponsored content in Dubai
Blog Post04.12.2017—1am
Austria: The marketing of a newspaper
Blog Post04.11.2017—1am
NYT: What a difference a continent makes
Blog Post04.10.2017—1am
High school journalists’ investigative work produces results
Blog Post04.07.2017—1am
Some interesting weekend reads: innovation, new products, new numbers
Blog Post04.06.2017—1am
Print can be big, too
Blog Post04.05.2017—2am
The first Spanish-language newspaper for children is here
Blog Post04.04.2017—1am
Design thinking for journalists, why not?
Blog Post04.03.2017—2am
It’s a new look for the Las Vegas Review Journal
Blog Post03.31.2017—2am
Highlights of my webinar
Blog Post03.30.2017—7am
It’s the era of templates
Blog Post03.29.2017—1am
The role of print in my students’ lives
Blog Post03.28.2017—1am
Journalists and cocktail parties: not a happy mojito these days
Blog Post03.27.2017—1am
Financial Times: new look, new campaign (with readers as the main event)
Blog Post03.24.2017—2am
Mobile, news and Latin America: highlights of a conference
Blog Post03.23.2017—1am
For journalism students: learning about linear/visual storytelling
Contact us with speaking requests, questions or to discuss a project.