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Industry Insights: Are micropayments the next big thing?

Feb 11, 2016
Industry trends

With the rise of ad blocking, more publishers are considering micropayments as an alternative revenue stream. However, the solution to the primary barrier that deterred publishers from micropayments previously, decision fatigue, has yet to be found. Readers already bothered by tracking software and invasive ads will not spend time deciding whether an individual article is worth paying for. Until digital wallets or some other paradigm defines an easy micropayment standard that eliminates constant decision making, micropayments remain a hopeful dream rather than a real revenue stream.

Read more about what publishers are discovering  in this week’s Industry Insights, available now!

Piano holds Digital Strategies Workshop in Bogota

Feb 10, 2016
Kweli Washington listens to a question at the Piano Digital Strategies Workshop

Kweli Washington listens to a question at the Piano Digital Strategies Workshop

Bogota, Colombia, Feb. 10, 2016 – Almost 40 top Colombian digital news media executives attended a Piano workshop today on developing premium product strategies. The main focus of the workshop was showing the group how to approach and ask their audiences to pay for access to content on both desktop and mobile. In attendance were executives from top national Colombian news sites, specialized publications and top regional sites, including those from Medellin, Cali, Bucamaranga, Cartagena and other cities from the interior of the South American nation.

The executives gathered at the Bogota headquarters of the Colombian newspapers association, Andiarios, for an all-day session led by Piano’s Global Director, Talent & Culture Kweli Washington, who informed the group about global revenue trends in digital media and the need to develop alternatives to advertising-based revenue.

With these trends in mind, several Colombian publishers requested anonymous audience analyses to identify characteristics within their website audience consumption patterns with an eye to designing new commercial strategies tailored to the opportunities afforded in each case.

Kweli also talked about how declining CPMs, the spread of ad blocking software and successful subscription strategies have made it incumbent upon publishers to begin to, or re-evaluate alternatives to their digital business models, most of which are based entirely on advertising.

Later, Piano’s Latin American Sales Director, John Reichertz, addressed the gathering, stressing the need to urgently confront the challenge posed by the smartphone “revolution.” Just as the Internet drained revenue from print publishers’ coffers earlier in the decade, mobile is now undercutting existing digital business strategies, further impairing revenue streams.

According to Andiarios, Colombian publishers reported that about 50% of their overall digital traffic comes from smartphones, a percentage that is growing daily. Nevertheless, mobile traffic, like most mobile traffic worldwide, generates only a small fraction of overall digital revenue.

Reichertz also demonstrated the cutting-edge sales and marketing capabilities of Piano VX, the SaaS commerce-for-content platform and Composer, Piano’s sleek new drag and drop interface that lets publishers create tailored experiences for different audience segments and produce personalized offers to specific audience segments like mobile or search and social referral traffic.

Piano would like to thank all those who attended the workshop for their time.

Piano’s Industry Insights: How Will Google’s AMP Affect the Industry?

Jan 21, 2016
Industry trends

As Google gets set to launch the Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) project next month, publishers are increasingly focusing on page load speed. Those who implement AMP will see a boost in search traffic from Google because their algorithm takes into account load speed when returning search results and those with AMP will load faster than those without. Google is also working with various companies to make sure that AMP pages will properly monetize, something that neither Facebook nor Apple’s walled gardens support. Piano is working with Google to spec out paywall integration with AMP.

Read more about what publishers are discovering  in this week’s Industry Insights, available now!

Piano Expands Team, Hires Slovak Tech Evangelist and Senior Software Architect

Jan 20, 2016
Piano news

New York, Jan. 20, 2016 – Piano, the world’s leading provider of e-commerce SaaS software to media companies, has added to its team in Bratislava, strengthening its Technology and Product Development capabilities with the hires. Piano’s platform includes the Web’s most sophisticated visual segmentation engine and audience analysis tools and is deployed by more than 1200 websites worldwide.

Ivan Debnar, the founder of Slovakia’s largest search engine Zoznam and founder of the Bratislava Startup Incubator, “The Spot,” is a digital native. He started Slovakia’s first Internet Café in 1996; created one of the country’s first ISPs before founding and running, Slovakia’s biggest native search engine; and was CTO at Azet, Slovakia’s largest online portal.

Tomi Vanek comes to Piano from Accenture where he was a Senior Software Architect leading projects from The Walt Disney Company, T-Mobile and the US Government’s Web-portal.

Trevor Kaufman, Piano’s CEO said, “I couldn’t be more thrilled about both Ivan and Tomi joining the Piano Team in Bratislava. Ivan has an amazing background and is extremely well connected to both the local and regional IT and startup communities. Tomi has an incredible track record, working as a consultant for Accenture on complex and critical projects for major companies like Disney and T-Mobile. We are extremely excited that they are joining us to help expand Bratislava’s role as Piano’s leading development center for audience data and analytics.”

Piano is a global software firm that resulted from the mergers of New York-based companies Tinypass and Journalism Online and Bratislava-based Piano Media. Piano Media is one of Slovakia’s startup success stories, having started a nation-wide subscription systems for Slovak, Slovenian and Polish newspapers, and then successfully pivoting to focus on subscriptions for individual publications and data analysis.

Piano is now the most deployed e-commerce for content platform in the world. With clients in 19 countries and over four billion page views under management, the company continues to expand its tech development center in Bratislava, hiring talented analysts and developers who are skilled in developing data products. Piano employs more than 110 people, including 80 product and tech developers in its European and American offices.