State of Publishing: June 2018 –…

State of Publishing: June 2018 – UK Market

There was a lot to cheer for in June.

The country was swept up in World Cup fever, celebrating England’s success during the qualifiers. Britons were glued to their screens with the new season of Love Island and other summer TV favourites. After a gloomy start to the year, Britons were also lapping up the hot weather conditions throughout the month of June.

But, there was less cheer on the political front. The UK’s future with the EU continued to be murky, as Theresa May’s Brexit plans were debated and repealed in Parliament. A war of words also erupted between Trump and the US’ key allies at the G7 summit in Quebec, Canada.

In June’s snapshot, we look at these top stories and more, spotlighting:

  • Daily searches to news & media publications
  • The audiences behind the top news stories
  • The publishers who successfully attracted these audiences.

Top 20 Publishers


UK State of Publishing: June 2018 - Top 20
Source: Visit share in News & Media industry. The above list excludes: BBC Homepage, BBC Good Food, Reddit and weather sites. MoM shows movement in ranking, vs. previous month.

Key Stories for the Month


As with the previous months, daily searches for “Brexit”, “Trump” and “Meghan Markle”, continued to trend throughout the month. June also saw enormous spikes for two other key events – Love Island and the World Cup. On the day of the new series commencement, searches for “Love Island” going to News & Media sites grew by 622%, over two days. The peak for “World Cup” searches also occurred when reigning champion, Germany, was knocked out of the qualifiers.

UK State of Publishing: June 2018 - Top Search Terms
Source: Top unbranded news-related search terms, in the month of June 2018 (excluding branded searches and standard searches, like BBC, Liverpool fixtures, etc.)

Love Island vs. The World Cup: Audience Overlap


Despite one being reality TV and the other being football, Love Island and World Cup audiences weren’t all that different.

In June, the number of people searching for the World Cup (6.67 million) was over four times the size of people searching for Love Island (1.56 million).

However, there was still over half a million unique users who searched for and were interested in both topics (i.e. 36% of Love Island’s audience and 8% of World Cup’s audience).

UK State of Publishing: June 2018 - Audience Overlap

Source: Top unbranded news-related search terms, in the month of June 2018 (excluding branded searches and standard searches, like BBC, Liverpool fixtures, etc.)

So what?
As a publisher, understand what else your audience is interested in through search analysis (and sometimes the results may be surprising…).

Tailor your content based on these other areas of interest to increase your existing audience’s engagement.

Love Island vs. The World Cup: Profile Zoom


Whilst key demographics like age and gender differed, Love Island and World Cup fans shared similar attitudes and interests. When it came to opinions on news & media, Love Island and World Cup fans enjoyed watching ads with their favourite celebrities, and found TV adverts interesting. These audience groups searched for celebrity news, celebrity gossip and David Beckham in the month of June.

UK State of Publishing: June 2018 - Audience Profile
Audience = Searchers of “Love Island” and/or “World Cup” (and top 10,000 variations of the term). Period = 4 rolling weeks to 30-Jun-2018.

Who Captured this Audience?


Where did these searches lead to?

Understandably, News channels that aired Love Island (ITV) and the World Cup (BBC Sport) were the top recipients from these search terms.

But there was also a long tail of publishers vying for this traffic over the month.

Out of these publications, The Sun successfully captured both news stories by featuring regular updates on Love Island’s twists and turns as the television series unfolded, as well as quirky news angles for World Cup fans.

UK State of Publishing: June 2018 - Search Share
Top News Recipients of searches of “Love Island” or “World Cup” (and top 10,000 variations of the term). Period = 4 rolling weeks to 30-Jun-2018.

In the month of June, the top three articles on The Sun’s World Cup coverage included: “Stunning TV Presenter Steals The Show”, “Fantasy Football Tips”, and “Daily World Cup Quiz”.

So what?
Competition is fierce for top news stories. By using search term variations and tracking these on a daily basis, publications are able to build unique, relevant and eye-catching content.