India.com bets big on young readers
The portal is aiming to continue leveraging new ways of promoting its assets through powerful properties
Initially an aggregator of links of partner sites, India.com became a standalone portal in January-2014. It started off with practically zero traffic. Its vision was to cover new-age content like trending topics, opinions, humour, viral videos and any content tuned to young Indian users.
India.com clocked 10 million visits in May-2014 in the election month and ahead of that number in October-2014. The election-2014 was covered in innovatively for youth with the title as “YouthInk” and sections like “Youthiapa”, “Youthube”, “Youth-teri” and YouthKsjetra”.
According to Sandeep Amar, Chief Operating Officer, India.com, “This is one of the fastest growing sites in India in the new-age content space and ahead of all competition.”
“The idea was to focus on what young readers wanted to read. It is not like a single plan worked for us, we had learnings on the way and we changed our strategy over time. One thing we clearly learned was that young readers give equal importance to sports, entertainment, music and politics. And we have used that learning in defining our homepage. Our homepage surfaces all of this content with no specific priority - like in a news site - hard news and politics is a priority,” Amar said.
“The success of India.com is also due to young content team creating content for young users. They drive the content philosophy and strategy. One example is covering EPL, Spanish league and other football leagues from Europe - the young team decided that - they were certain that Indian youth would buy it. And it worked for us.
“Unlike a news organization we do not have one view on one subject. Different writers have different views and it gets published with equal push. And our young writers are not afraid to take flak - I remember one writer was highly critical of the movie Kick and took some really dirty flak from Salman fans in comments. But that is the fun part of doing this business - having a point of view is important,” he pointed out.
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