Mastering the dark arts: #Facebook has been the key to Mother Jones’ growing popularity online | Nieman Lab via @mona
But there’s more to Dreyfuss’s strategy than making a splash. Attention-getting posts and headlines bring in little bursts of traffic, but that’s not Mother Jones’ end game. The light content is meant to keep the audience in place so that when a heavily reported series or investigative story is published, there’s someone there to read it. It’s sort of the reverse tactic of organizations like BuzzFeed that started out silly but are moving into traditional news content.
“You gain more eyes with all this stuff that people want to read because it’s candy, and then, once you gain their readership and their following, you can give them the more healthy thing,” Dreyfuss says. “Our most shared stuff is never the candy stuff, it’s not the dessert. It actually ends up being some of the magazine stories, some of the things we’re really proud of, as opposed to being silly things.”