Being the manager of a content creation firm, scaling up is pivotal to brand building. With minimal knowledge of scalability and outreach, most marketers try to expand their business by leveraging virality.

This gesture implies that marketers relentlessly pursue a viral piece of content to acquire a substantial user base. However, certain companies have employed a robust scaling strategy and leveraged the correct parameters to achieve massive success.

InShorts is one such mobile app company that has acquired a significant user base by providing the latest news across various domains in 60 words or less. 

Improving User Engagement Through Analytics: What, How, and When to Measure and Act

Inception of InShorts

Every successful company like InShorts has a story that revolves around determining a core issue, devising a robust solution, and providing value to its users. 

According to Deepit Purkaystha, Co-Founder and Chief Strategy Officer of InShorts, the core issue that required addressing was the current generation being ignorant about the latest happenings in India and around the world.

Emphasising Quality Over Quantity

After its inception, the team at InShorts decided to drop several push notifications to the end-users to increase the number of views on each story. While this might sound appealing, it did not end well for InShorts.

While InShorts had started getting more views per story, the user retention rate had dropped substantially. This scenario directly resulted from a user’s frustration after being bombarded with dozens of notifications throughout the day.

Determine a Core Issue

While social media platforms like Facebook barely provided reliable news, the people wanted an efficient application that could deliver more news in minimal time without compromising quality. 

Bearing this issue in mind, the team at InShorts decided to build a platform that could provide users with one 60-words story at a time without bombarding them with several news links at once.

Choose an Appropriate Success Metric

The success metric of InShorts, as defined by Deepit Purkaystha, is how many screens did the user go through on a particular day, which is about 80 stories for an average user.

They have emphasised user engagement and satisfying the use-case of providing brief yet factually verified news updations and not being driven by virality.

Contemplate Factors That Drive Engagement

The top three factors that have worked exceptionally well for InShorts are –

  1. Emphasising the time spent by a user swiping across news stories, which has helped promote sharability. InShorts has achieved this feat via visual communication by providing intuitive and engaging images tagged with each news story.
  2. Measuring the number of stories viewed by an individual in a single session. This metric provided insights into increasing screen time for the end-user across multiple sessions and not in one go.
  3. Focusing on the relevance of each story. InShorts has tried to deliver stories that pique a user’s interest while also providing other significant happenings. The prediction models used by InShorts do not bombard a user with notifications but instead provide personalised story prompts. 

The Feedback Loop Structure 

Being a product business that generates readable content for the users, InShorts initially struggled with resource channelising.

The team had to decide either to improve product quality and features or to aid the content creation and the editorial team.

After analysing their objectives and workflow, InShorts decided to empower the editorial team by providing insightful data and gathering feedback on the desired features and metrics. 

A substantial portion of the initial training and mentoring of recruits in the editorial team of InShorts revolves around data processing techniques. 

Create Intelligent Measurements

InShorts stopped measuring absolute numbers for notification clicks. This decision came about considering that the number of people clicking on a story varies across the day as per their convenience, and juxtaposing these figures at different intervals is irrelevant.

“We can’t measure the notification opening rate sent at lunchtime with a benchmark that measured the story opening rate during midday,” Deepit Purkaystha said while interacting with Ashwin SL, Director Marketing, MoEngage.

InShorts has started measuring performance parameters based on average benchmarks rather than analysing all gathered values. Reviewing and recording such data is conducted by the editorial team, and this is why training recruits involve data processing.

Variations in User Behaviour With Subsequent Tier Groups

Tier-1 Users

The behaviour portrayed by tier-1 cities is a unified class of users. Most English-speaking users exhibit interests in national and international news owing to their cosmopolitan attributes.

The tier-1 user segment also portrays interest in pro-reading English textual brief content and actively indulges in consuming intellectual content due to their exposure to the internet and applications for almost a decade.

Tier-2 and Tier-3 Users

The tier-2 and tier-3 city users, on the other hand, have only recently gained access to internet applications. Owing to this, the users from these tiers are going through a learning phase. 

This user segment cannot leverage the internet efficiently to acquire knowledge and is being driven towards aspects that they are being propelled into and not the ones that they are seeking actively. 

The propensity of tier-2 and tier-3 city users to consume video content remains substantially higher than short text. 

Interaction With Different Tier Groups

Considering the enormous disparities in the behaviour exhibited by different tier groups, InShorts has created personalised content and products to comply with everyone’s requirements. 

As most application creators aspire to create a super-app for all audiences, they often overlook the necessity of being extremely robust and scalable.

Developers must realise that it is more beneficial to create an app that focuses on a particular niche rather than incorporating several domains for different audiences. 

Personalised Video Content for Different Users by InShorts

InShorts has undertaken an innovative approach by providing users with consumable video content from other users and influencers. This gesture has helped create a stronger sense of personalisation.

InShorts has enabled user engagement via tagging, which lets users tag each other on news stories and opinions on national or global happenings. 

“People want to consume a lot of video content which is relatable for them. We wish to leverage this trend for news and information sharing,” said Deepit Purkaystha. 

User Retention and Growth

While wrapping up, Deepit Purkaystha claimed that some users inevitably opt-out of your platform. It is imperative for you to narrow down your shortcomings to avert users with a similar profile from churning out. 

Statistically, a substantial number of users who uninstall InShorts eventually reinstall the app as the platform grows in the right direction. 

An approach that InShorts implements to acquire new users is by conducting a segregate measurement of metrics for them. This approach ensures precision targeting and keeps away the biases that originate because of existing users.

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