ST readers to enjoy more personalised experience with targeted reads

The personalised news reading experience means readers can easily follow news and updates on topics that matter to them, in the form of targeted reads and videos.
The personalised news reading experience means readers can easily follow news and updates on topics that matter to them, in the form of targeted reads and videos.PHOTO: ST FILE

A digital publication that knows the kind of news individuals are interested in, by learning what they like to read, is the personalised news reading experience that will be enjoyed by readers of The Straits Times (ST) and other Singapore Press Holdings (SPH) publications from November.

This means readers can easily follow news and updates on topics that matter to them, in the form of targeted reads and videos.

For example, those who follow business news closely on SPH websites and apps will be referred to more articles and analyses on the topic. Or football fans can get updates on how their favourite team fared in the latest matches.

This is made possible with SPH publications adopting new data and software tools that make use of machine learning to "pick up" the online reading habits and preferences of readers.

In a statement yesterday, SPH said it will be deploying the new tools, developed by Oslo-based Cxense ASA, across its media platforms. Currently, readers of SPH's digital products see the same standardised news pages.

With this tech solution working behind the scenes, they can continue to keep up with the biggest news of the day, while enjoying targeted articles that cater to their individual interests.

Said SPH deputy chief executive officer Anthony Tan: "In today's world, a one-size-fits-all solution is no longer appropriate for any successful digital product. Being able to personalise our users' experiences will allow us to make the best use of SPH's wealth of content and ensure that our readers get the news that matters most to them."

NEWS THAT MATTERS MOST

Being able to personalise our users' experiences will allow us to make the best use of SPH's wealth of content and ensure that our readers get the news that matters most to them.

SPH DEPUTY CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER ANTHONY TAN

The move to tailor news to readers' interests is also aimed at helping SPH boost reader subscriptions. The media group has been focusing on increasing reader revenues, especially for its digital products, as a sustainable recurring income stream.

The company has some of Asia's most well-known publications, including flagship newspapers ST and Lianhe Zaobao. Its digital products reach 23 million unique browsers and generate 360 million page views monthly, with the majority of readers being professionals, managers, executives and businessmen.

The partnership with SPH is one of Cxense's biggest projects in Asia to date. SPH will become a strategic partner of Cxense and a member of the Cxense Product Council for Conversion Engine.

Cxense CEO Christian Printzell Halvorsen said: "SPH is a beacon in the publishing business and this agreement highlights the enormous growth potential of combining world-class content with data-driven solutions and personalised customer journeys that put the reader first."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on September 28, 2018, with the headline 'ST readers to enjoy more personalised experience with targeted reads'. Print Edition | Subscribe