We are thrilled to announce the redesign of weldbham.com. One of Weld’s core tenets – a community blogging network – is finally accessible to everyone who reads and uses Weld for Birmingham. Effectively, we now have the “complete community connection” which we’ve envisioned since the very beginnings of Weld.
I often joke that I can (and would) do my Weld song and dance for even a brick wall. That’s because I believe in Weld’s mission and vision, and I know that it works. It works for our readers, it works for the quality of the content we offer and it works for our advertisers. This redesign only increases the overall value and engagement for everyone.
For our advertisers, it’s really quite simple. We provide value by A) delivering highly engaged readers and users, B) delivering a longer average visit, and C) creating a seamless connection between advertisers and end users.
What are some of the values created by weldbham.com? As an advertiser, you can feed your company’s blog into weldbham.com. Do you have a company Facebook page or Twitter feed? You can use these as your ad. In fact, one of our first advertisers increased their Facebook engagement by over 300% in the first month of indexing their Facebook news feed into their ad space.
Effective advertising happens when you engage. We create a seamless channel from the advertisement to the reader/user. Are you familiar with pop-up ads, those pesky ‘cars’ driving across the screen or that odd paper fold-down tactic? Annoying, right? These ads deliver no engagement and in fact create user annoyance, if not apathy. This is not only wrong and ineffective, it also delivers a false sense of performance for the advertiser.
Our website delivers clean design, with intentionally few, yet dynamic, ad placements. This has allowed us to show a click-through rate 3-5 times higher than industry standard. Rather than impede the reader from accessing the content they seek, the advertising complements the entire experience, and often can provide additional resources if ads are strategically placed around industry-specific editorial content.
I also believe selling page views based on inappropriate comments from anonymous users is wrong. On weldbham.com, comments are posted using Facebook Connect, which strengthens accountability and provides relevant discourse by our readers. (In fact, as an advertiser, you can actually see the names of people who view your ads.)
The site is built with responsive technology. What does this mean? No matter the hardware you use to access weldbham.com – iPhone, tablet, PC, laptop – the website adjusts to fit your screen. This is great for the reader and the advertiser because it eliminates further barriers of entry, such as downloading apps or subscription requirements. Again, Weld creates a seamless connection between the advertiser and the end user.
We all know the consumption of news and entertainment is changing, and it’s changing rapidly. Weld for Birmingham has a very flexible business model to respond quickly. Is it time to begin paid-for subscription services? We can do that. Is there another social media outlet we’ve not yet seen? We can accommodate. Will our audience want print for years to come? We can deliver this.
Finally, Weld for Birmingham works for everyone. As it grows to become the go-to source for Birmingham, we’ll continue to help strengthen the complete community connection between every voice, comment and commentary on weldbham.com.