FT in web app refresh

The FT has unveiled a refreshed version of its mobile web-app in its ongoing bid to diversify the type of advertisers it attracts by broadening its appeal to younger audiences.

FT refreshing its web apps.

The redesign, tailored specifically for iPad and iOS users, includes the choice between a “static morning edition”, to reflect its print issue, or a “dynamically updating” format, to keep readers abreast of up-to-the-minute developments.

Speaking with Marketing Week, FT.com managing director, Rob Grimshaw said the update also includes improvements in how its content is displayed, making it easier to sweep between pages and enhanced prominence for visual content, including video.

Talking about the new advertising proposition available to brands in the latest version of the web app, he says they can gain further prominence with full page ads served as users scroll between sections, a format that was not available in previous versions.

“What we’re wrestling with is how to create a desktop-style ad on a mobile device,” he says, adding the company has also improved its software to improve how all content, including ads, is served off-line and then tracked off-line.

The FT’s web app, which was spurned by its high-profile row with Apple over commission payments via in-app subscriptions iOS editions, has gained a significantly younger audience compared to its other formats, according to Grimshaw.

“Our mobile audience skews significantly younger than our other audiences,” he says.

This base is among the title’s highest priorities, in terms of marketing, says Grimshaw adding that promoting its brand to younger audiences requires a “more diverse” marketing mix than appealing to its “traditional core readership.”

Last month, the paper launched a campaign to mark its 125-year-old anniversary emphasising that everyone is touched by business.

Read Marketing Week’s profile of the FT’s marketing chief Jocelyn Cripps here.

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