The collaboration between Norwegian publisher Bergens Tidende (Schibsted) and United Robots around automated real estate content – a huge reader revenue success – has now generated nominations in 3 categories of the 2021 INMA Global Media Awards. Five percent of all article conversions at BT now happen through the real estate articles.
Bergens Tidende launched their Home Sales vertical in the summer of 2020. The section is populated solely with automated real estate content generated by United Robots and developed in close collaboration with the BT newsroom.
BT's strategy is to use the elaborate articles and visualisations to drive subscription sales. With the robot written content now generating 5% of all article conversions, project Lead Jan Stian Vold says it's paid off:
"Since launching mid July 2020, we have sold 500 subscriptions from nearly 6000 automated articles. We anticipate roughly 1000 new subscriptions pr. year. That’s five percent of all the articles conversions in BT, overnight establishing the robot as the most popular service to our readers.This provides Bergens Tidende with a new revenue stream without at all inflicting the capacity of the newsroom."
The Boligsalg vertical has been nominated in:
• Best Initiative to Acquire Subscribers
• Best Use of Data To Drive Subscriptions, Content, or Product Design
• Best Use of Data to Automate or Personalise
So why do people convert?
• Sophisticated content & data analysis. The real estate articles talk not just about the current house/apartment sale, but also about how the property has performed over time and in relation to other properties in the neighbourhood, city area, and Bergen as a whole. And each article has a top ten list of properties sold in the neighbourhood over the past month.
• Multiple quality visualisations. The articles include a Google Streetview photo of the property, a satellite map with a property pinpoint as well as an aerial photo with a street address label for the house.
• Granular geotargetting. Thanks to BT’s extensive tagging structure, they serve the most relevant real estate stories to individual readers. They’ve divided the city of Bergen into four sections; north, west, south and central. The next level of tags is by postal code / neighbourhood, and beneath that small and compact geo areas, which means the content reaching the reader is of high value and super relevant.
Bergens Tidende on the partnership with United Robots:
"A key success factor for the project has been how responsive the United Robots team have been to ideas I’ve had – the route from idea to impact and increased value is short. It’s been fantastic to work with developers who are just as keen to drive innovation as I am. With projects like these, there’s always a risk that you launch and leave, but the United Robots team continue to walk that extra mile to keep improving the content."
Jan Stian Vold, Project Lead, BT