Redesigning Forbes for the digital age

Forbes web

Forbes chief product officer Lewis Dvorkin was interviewed by Chris Smith of The Guardian in London about how the business magazine’s operations have been overhauled for the new media world.

Here is an excerpt:

What philosophy have you adopted to stay relevant to people’s digital lifestyles?

We have transformed from a website into a publishing platform. We have a core group of full-time reporters and a 1,000-strong contributor network – and all use a distributed set of easy-to-use publishing tools to create content and attract followings around their expertise. They are building personal brands under the Forbes umbrella brand. In doing so, they are making one-on-one connections with audience members — and engaging in conversation with them. Hundreds of contributors (freelance journalists, authors, academics, topic experts and business leaders) participate in an incentive payment programme – the bigger their loyal audience, the more they make. Others find reward in association with the Forbes brand. The new economics of journalism require quality, scale and efficiency. Our new model achieves all three.

How are user expectations evolving around how they manage their digital lifestyles and information?

People want to be participants and decision-makers in the news process. Social media turns everyone into an editor and many into suppliers of information. That means the audience wants its voice to be heard alongside the professional journalist. In some cases that means influencing a news page through up votes. In others, it means the ability to comment and follow a conversation just like you might follow a story. Digital consumers also want to be able to follow those reporters they respect as a first step in personalising their news experience and creating their own personal news feed to share with friend and colleagues. In all respects, they expect the news organisation to find them, rather than the other way around.

Read more here.