Are PR people the main readers of UK online IT news publications? Google thinks so.


Google has just updated its Doubleclick Ad Planner tool with a useful new feature that shows a site’s top 10 audience interests, representing the aggregate interests of the site’s visitors.
As Google says: “In these top 10 lists, each interest is assigned an affinity score, such as 3.9x, which means visitors to the site are that many more times likely to be interested in the topic than the average Internet population.”
I tried it out on a couple of UK online IT news sites – computerweekly.com and v3.co.uk.
For the former title, public relations was the 2nd top audience interest for UK visitors, with an affinity score of 33.3x.  For V3.co.uk, PR was the top audience interest with an affinity score of 30.1x. In other words, the average UK visitor to computerweekly.com/v3.co.uk is 33.3/30.1 times more likely to be interested in public relations than the average Internet user.
Which is curious. Who knew that UK IT folk were so interested in PR. Or could it be that a sizeable proportion of UK visitors to these online IT news sites are in fact PR people (presumably checking to see if they’ve got any client coverage).
I realise this is only a sample of two, but I’m curious to see if this is a common phenomenon across the online IT publication sector as a whole – at least in the UK.
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Comments

  1. It wouldn’t surprise me. Just like a large proportion of trade mag subscriptions come from either the advertisers or PR people.

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  2. But how does it *know* this? I looked around a bit on the help page and couldn’t find out how it worked out the audiences. I’m not disagreeing with you, but how does Google know that PR people are more interested in CW and V3?

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    • Andrew Bruce Smith says:

      Here’s what Google says: “Aggregated audience interests in Ad Planner are generated by applying Google’s interest-based advertising classification system to Ad Planner’s aggregated sample data. Ad Planner classifies aggregated opt-in user data into interest categories based on sites that users are visiting. These audience interests are presented in aggregated form in Ad Planner to help better understand the interests of the totality of visitors to a given site and are not used to categorize individual users or for individual user targeting on a particular site or across the web.”

      In other words, it is saying that an average visitor to CW is 33 times more likely to be interested in public relations – or rather, they are 33 times more likely to visit sites that have been classified as “public relations related” sites. As per my post, you have to try and understand what kind of person is likely to be interested in public relations – an IT worker, PR person – or something else.

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  3. zeainana says:

    This information is very curious because make us to consider who would be interested in PR topics apart from PR people. Are they looking for subscribers? Searching their brand? New trends? Who knows. What Google cannot identify by the moment are the actual motivations of the visitors, but probably is in progress!

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  4. Part of the Digital PR module in my MSc module requires students to regularly read and comment on technology blogs. This helps us keep abreast of the latest developments in the IT world, of which a large part relates to PR.

    In recent weeks I have been using Google analytics to monitor the traffic on my peronal blog (www.theprwire.blogspot.com). This tool is very useful for PR practitioners as it allows you to define exactly where the majority of traffic is coming from, in terms of websites and georgraphical location. Google analytics also allows you to monitor the average time people spent browsing your site.

    Google ananlytics and stat counter are free and are example of great IT tools that can help PR practitioners.

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