Kate Faughnan

Marketing Manager

A key element of bringing the Digital Services team down to headquarters in DC is physical migration of our technical operations for our DC-based team to manage ongoing maintenance and improvements.

As we plan to move our data center, including servers that support Core Publisher, a DNS update is required for ongoing functionality. For those stations whose DNS is handled by NPR Digital Services, we will complete the update for you. For those stations that manage their own DNS, say through a domain registrar like GoDaddy, a settings update is necessary.

Over the past few months, we've been actively working on our HTTPS transition for streams and podcasts and we're thrilled to report 95% of all podcast listening in NPR One is now secure. 

Thanks to the massive effort from our station community, we are confident that we can complete the transition by the end of this summer.

On August 31, we will remove all insecure podcasts and streams from NPR One, npr.org and the NPR News App. 

Until now, promotional and branding messages from stations to listeners in NPR One had been limited to short clips called Sonic IDs. While the original intent of Sonic IDs was to reinforce station presence and connection within NPR One, data told us that Sonic IDs were not solving the problem: these messages were infrequently updated and often skipped by users.

Over the last few months, one of the priorities of the NPR Digital team has been to present station brands more consistently. For stations within networks, this meant updates to StationConnect designed to streamline workflow and make updates easily. 

Tomorrow, we'll take this a step farther. In an effort to present the best possible station brand data, we've updated NPR.org to use larger logo format, currently managed in StationConnect.

This post is part of an ongoing series about new tools in NPR One. If you've missed any of our recent posts, catch-up on the latest updates: Making NPR One more localLaying the foundation: your Station Page in NPR One, Seeing and hearing your top podcasts more often.

“Differentiating between all our shows vs. true podcasts is very promising. We look forward to seeing how users react to determine how and how often we curate” 
– Emily Alfin Johnson, VPR 

Our goal with the explore tool and for NPR One more generally, is to encourage listeners to sample shows so that we can determine what they like, and deliver more often. These positive listening experiences lead to more frequent returns and longer sessions.

"As a smaller station, I appreciate prominent station branding so listeners can get to know us better” – Rachel Hubbard, KOSU

Your Station Page should do just that: allow listeners to get familiar with your station, or dive deeper into your brand and content.  

It starts with your logo, display name and tagline. As listeners scroll down the page, they can quickly access a your top content or live stream of your station on NPR.org.  

Since we last spoke about the HTTPS transition across the NPR network, we’ve been hard at work preparing NPR systems for this migration, as well as working to outline and ease this transition for all of our Member stations.

Before you get to work for your next pledge drive, make sure you're reviewing all the latest Marketing Forms updates for better reporting and measurement. 

Here's a peek into the features in Marketing Forms designed to help you make your next pledge drive your best yet:

As we’ve worked to develop and improve Member Station presence across all NPR platforms, two important considerations have guided our decision-making: what value will this have for both stations and end users, and what impact will it have on station workflow?

Today, we’re launching new logic in StationConnect designed to make your workflow much more efficient, ease the burden of updates, present your brand more consistently, and further foster strong relationships between your listeners and your station.

At this year’s Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC), Apple announced that they will soon require all apps to pull their content through HTTPS links, and by 2017, will no longer support apps that fail to do so.

This election has resulted in record-breaking audience both for NPR and member stations. For the past few months, our Analytics Service has been taking a look at who is visiting member station websites, and what we can learn to increase both depth and frequency of visits. 

For a complete picture of your election demographic, including recommendations for retaining this audience, visit NPRStations.org to view our monthly analytics webinar

We know that strong digital strategies rely on sustained user engagement. We also know that promoting and exploring user engagement is a topic that's always on your minds, as it is ours. User engagement means not only pages per visitor, but measuring how that visitor interacts and engages with the story. 

One way this intersects with broader distribution of stories is via social sharing. After researching and exploring how to promote social sharing, we've developed new social buttons on post pages that we hope will encourage visitors to your stories to share them with friends. 

Last week was our monthly analytics webinar, where we gather together the top insights across the system on both audience and engagement. 

As you might expect, election coverage was a big focus for the system this month, and we broke down  audience consumption of election coverage, as well as its impact on retention rate. And the results are significant: politics and election coverage had more than double the one-week retention rate of the previous 12 weeks. 

Our NPR One Local Team has been hard at work on two key goals: building stronger individual relationships with listeners and improving the station experience on the app. To both of these ends, we have some news to share.

To ensure a consistent experience across platforms and promote longer listening, we’re encouraging user profiles, recommending content using the explore feature, and getting listeners to stories faster. We’re also adding the ability to upload your newscasts as .wav files to make them easier to upload with higher quality audio.

  Perhaps we're a little biased because it was in our backyard, but we had a great PMDMC this year. With over 60 sessions offered, as well as mini-courses run at DS University within the NPR booth, we at Digital Services had much to discuss with you at the show and amongst ourselves after returning to the office. 

First, we want to thank all of you who spent time with us in the NPR booth throughout the week. Whether you attended a course, played games with us, or stopped by for a chat, it was great to see you in person!