By Md.Tajdin Hassan
Today, a large share of the news consumers have switched their reading habits from print to digital. Along with the change in user-behaviour, the user expectations have also gone up. A clean site with a friendly interface that provides credible news in the language the reader prefers is today the ideal.
Trustworthiness and convenience seems to be the two most important factors considered by the readers while choosing their news source. The medium of news (print, online etc.), the format of the content (text, video etc.) and language in which the news is conveyed are particularly important in deciding the convenience quotient.
As Marketing Head of Bangladesh’s leading English Daily, I have always wondered why our investigative or editorial pieces were not getting the desired traction despite a growing market. The traction that news with clickbait headlines or spiced up content received over quality content surprised me. At times even brands chased the impression numbers driven by such substandard news.
As I shared my frustration with our Executive Editor, Syed Ashfaqul Haque, he proposed a possible solution.
A large share of the audience searches for credible news, but they are more comfortable with content in their native language. Providing news in the regional language would do well to increase the reach of the content and attract wider audience.
But it was not an easy decision for us as it meant stepping out of our comfort zone.
We went ahead, nevertheless. To serve the audience better, Daily Star has launched a new bilingual site, which is accessible at www.thedailystar.net
The new website offers a user-friendly layout which brings a clean distinction between English and Bangla news. The categories and menus have been prepared after thorough research and with great care so as to not overwhelm the reader with a deluge of content.
The reader has the option to choose between English and Bangla and can view the site entirely in either of the languages depending on his/her choice. We believe this will help us further strengthen our relationship with the audience.
The website also has a new multimedia section. Video content such as ‘Straight From The Newsroom” and “Star on the Spot” have been created in such a way that they not only provide the audience an in-depth understanding of issues, but also allows them to interact with the editorial staff.
The new website is the result of efforts that spanned across a year. As we continue to put our efforts everyday into making it more suitable to the needs of the audience, we welcome your suggestions and thoughts on how we could serve you better.
About the author: Md.Tajdin Hassan is the Chief Strategy & Digital Transformation Officer at The Daily Star. He is also the alumni member of the IVLP Exchange Program, U.S. Department of State.