'WaPo' Post Cards Customize Branded Content, Delivery

The Washington Post has introduced a customizable branded content offering that breaks up an ad into separate multimedia units delivered to readers based on their preferred content format.

Called “Post Cards,” the offering pulls separate multimedia components from a piece of branded content, such as infographics, video, text and photo galleries. Each unit is then delivered to readers based on their preferred form of media.

For example, one reader may be served the photo gallery from a branded content piece directly on the page, while another would be served its text.

Post Cards was created by WaPo’s research, experimentation and development (RED) team.

In a statement, WaPo said its RED team last year focused on the speed of the advertising experience. Last May, The Washington Post launched “Fuse,” which allows mobile ads to instantly load within the current application and embedded between the content.



This year, the team is prioritizing delivery.

“When it comes to “delivering branded content to users more intelligently, advances are few and far between,” Jarrod Dicker, head of ad product and technology, wrote in a blog post.

“Each Post Card creates a customized user experience that allows readers to consume their preferred multimedia format directly on the page, then drives to the longer immersive feature,” he noted.

Dicker believes Post Cards emphasizes “the creativity and personal connection that is branded content’s biggest advantage.”

“The true value of branded content is in a collaborative approach to storytelling between agency, client and publisher that adds to a reader’s experience,” he said. The "click" which can be a barrier to entry for users engaging with brands via advertising, is “no longer the sole harbinger of a successful campaign.”

Post Cards offers in-unit consumption and click-through.

The Washington Post more than doubled programmatic and branded content revenue in 2016.

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