In September, Gannett Co.'s USA Today rolled out a dramatic redesign of its print, Web and mobile products. Larry Kramer, president-publisher of USA Today, spoke with Media Business about some of the changes.
Media Business: How will the redesign help boost the appeal of your print product among advertisers?
Larry Kramer: Among other things, we think it will bring in more readers, which helps advertisers. But it's designed really to be a much more interactive device, meaning we're programming the whole paper and we're challenging advertisers to be as bold as we are. We're going to offer more interesting positions, the ability to sponsor more areas of the paper and certain types of coverage. And the paper is now much more closely tied to a lot of our digital platforms. So I think the idea of doing multiplatform campaigns will be more appealing.
MB: The revamped website resembles a tablet version of the newspaper. Will that attract bigger advertising budgets?
Kramer: Absolutely. There are a couple things happening there at once. Yes, we're using the horizontal navigation that you're used to in a tablet. More important, we've changed the advertising so that it's much bigger units and (the ad) is always above the fold. ... By recreating the page-turning methodology, it makes it easier to present an advertiser on a full page because a reader doesn't feel trapped, or blocked or angry that something came down and blocked his content.