In today's dynamic digital landscape, where the ecosystem is ever evolving and you're required to make changes in a snap to keep up (or you simply want to make a design change without relying on a vendor), RebelMouse now gives you ultimate control over your site.
Our comprehensive Layout & Design tool enables you to customize, optimize, and flexibly manage any element of your site. The best part? No matter how you wield the Layout & Design tool, your site will be set up to look beautiful and perform optimally across devices, screen sizes, and platforms.
After building the product for Huffington Post, and owning the product and engineering groups at AOL after we were acquired, it was clear to me there was a huge gap between what the current CMS offering gave the world and what the world needed. Five years later we are at scale, moving the needle and doing to WordPress what Airbnb did to Craigslist.
Chances are that the CMS you work in every day was built before social — before the idea of distributed content was even coined. Even though publishing has changed dramatically, a lot of that heavy and outdated tech still exists today.
For example, WordPress has more than 87 million sites, but each platform update still has to be pushed out individually to each and every one of those customers. By contrast, RebelMouse is a centralized CMS, meaning our updates are pushed out to all of our sites at once (and sometimes even multiple times a day). We are always updating and integrating which is why we are quickly becoming the most sought-after alternative to WordPress VIP, with a platform that features content creation tools integrated directly into social APIs.
Websites became a part of our lives long before the revelation that fans are born in the feeds. The opportunity to reach huge social audiences is now, but that doesn't mean the website is dead. Publishing has just evolved.
With more than 87 million sites worldwide, WordPress is the leading CMS of the internet. But being a leader in your space doesn't come without its pitfalls. WordPress's massive site structure has opened them up to many security threats since the software's 2003 launch.
A severe hacking event shocked WP users in February 2017, when attackers penetrated 1.5 million sites thanks to a loophole within the WordPress REST API. The REST API was touted as a connector to enhance communication with other web programs, revolutionizing WP's own outdated API. A vulnerability in the REST API allowed hackers to infiltrate nearly 2 million sites — compromising up to 350,000 sites in one campaign alone.
It's awesome when your content takes off and starts to go "viral." But what if you could know the moment your content starts trending so you can take advantage of the momentum and push it even further?
This is where Velocity Alerts, unique to the RebelMouse platform, come into play. With Velocity Alerts, your team is notified when a post starts to trend so you can "add fuel to the fire" by featuring the post more prominently on you site, triggering newsletter alerts, or promoting on social.
Chances are the CMS you're using was created before social. If that's true, you may still view content on your website and social feeds as two different entities you have to control and manage. We're here to blur those lines for you and take publishing where it needs to be in 2017.
Decentralized models such as WordPress VIP lack the social integration necessary to mimic the feeds, and that's why they continue to fall behind. We've created a toolset to not only distribute your content on the platforms (where all the eyeballs are), but also let your content travel across platforms easily.
Our social CRM allows you to engage with influencer accounts without the laborious task of finding them.
Here's how it works.
The Facebook algorithm has taken a lot of twists and turns over the years. Each new update brings a new set of challenges — and opportunities — for publishers.
Facebook + Google own 90% of new ad revenue, leaving just 10% for brands and media companies looking for the almighty ROI. As Facebook continues the back-and-forth battle with Google to get the upper hand on the ad share market, the platform is going to need publishers more than ever. For real.
That's the catch though: Publishers need Facebook just as much as the platform needs them. It's a symbiotic relationship that's experienced some bumps in the road along the way, but at the end of the day it has to work out. Despite platform hiccups, your social strategy should be inherently selfish and focused on repeat followers and revenue. At RebelMouse, we believe you can leverage the behemoth that is Facebook to benefit your brand. But it's important to take a look at the odyssey thus far.
In this guide, you'll learn the following:
Dance Magazine is a beloved and storied print magazine. Over the decades, Dance Magazine has established itself as an icon in the dance industry, read by dancers of every age at every stage of their career.
Fred Seegal, Dance Magazine's owner, knew that there was a tremendous opportunity to take the company forward into a social-first publisher that could gain a large audience on the web. Fred also knew that trying to build this change from within through hiring would be extremely expensive, slow, and have a low chance of success. Fred had seen the work RebelMouse had done building The Dodo into the fifth largest publisher on Facebook, and our work with PAPER Magazine to rebuild them into a digital-first property. Our challenge together was clear: modernize the company, and build a new audience and a new digital revenue stream.
The Saturation Slowdown
It may not always seem like it, but since there are only so many hours in a day — and so much explosive growth in new media — digital consumption is experiencing a bit of a slowdown.
Publisher Axios (powered by RebelMouse) said the saturated market means that "all of the players in the ecosystem will have to work harder to produce better content and experiences to maintain our attention, whether that be via digital ads, social personalization, algorithms, videos or articles."
And it's true. We now live in an ecosystem where one viral moment isn't enough to gain meaningful awareness for your brand or media company. It takes many shining moments that nurture your followers into a loyal partnership with your content.
The media landscape has changed quite a bit since President Trump took office. While this has been tough to digest personally, it has made me realize more clearly what RebelMouse is as a company: Contagious media with a cultural impact.
We aren't just a technology company. We're a contagious media company with deep technology + an even deeper understanding of traffic.
We have a platform, and it's growing with each new site we create. We have a lot of fun picking who we work with — they are all really good people and the best at what they do. The sites we power are reflective of our commitment to integrity: EcoWatch, Axios, + Dance Magazine are some that we are super proud of right now.
Curating viral content isn't easy. If it was, we'd all be doing it and there would be an infiltration of (even more) salt baes and polarizing political GIFs.
But there's a reason why certain types of content get the viral engagement every publisher craves. And it's not as simple as post + pray. Meaning you can't just post something and hope to the social gods you go viral. There's more data behind it. First, you have to understand what makes content viral. Then, how it spreads.
The battle of the platforms has brought us to an even playing field.
There's something called the Reddit Bureau of Investigation. It's a subreddit where curious users leverage crowdsourcing to comb through digital clues to solve crimes. In 2013, it was these redditors who tried to find the Boston Marathon bombing suspects. In 2016, it was also rigorous Reddit investigators who tried to find out if Making a Murderer's Steven Avery was in fact guilty.
These Reddit detectives are just your so-called average joes sitting behind computer screens. And while they may have plenty of awful fails in their investigations, they still make national headlines.
Reddit's go-to internet detectives are an illustration of why digital publishing, particularly distributed content across platforms, has given us all an even playing field. It's also why big media companies should be worried.
The Reddit Bureau of Investigation is a social platform that puts users at the forefront.
RebelMouse doesn't just build ordinary websites. We're rethinking the role that websites play in today's dynamic infoscape. The feed has dominated social media for years now, but the website has never caught up. Now, RebelMouse gives you the toolset to not only distribute your content across platforms, but also ensure that users can easily move across platforms too. We call it Social UX for Media, and it's an absolute game changer.
At RebelMouse we're obsessed with setting up content for success through the power of distributed publishing. We've mastered a lean tech model that lets you launch socially-powered websites that can be launched in hours, not weeks.
Still, RebelMouse is much more than just a software vendor and technology platform. The company has deep experience building and launching successful media properties that gain real traction and have a chance to become a core part of pop culture.
The relationship between Facebook + publishers is complicated — chalk it up to the modern-day romances of Ross + Rachel, Carrie + Mr. Big.
And just like Ross needed Rachel and Carrie needed Mr. Big, we need Facebook.
As publishers, content creators, community managers, and marketers, it's something we've got to figure out. The platform has surpassed Google as the primary driver of referral traffic. 40% of Americans get their news from Facebook.
Waking up to a team email titled "Hello from the Philippines" isn't unconventional at RebelMouse. That's because we're a fully-remote company where every employee has the opportunity to work anywhere — yes, even your bed if you please. Being a global, results-oriented startup is built into our culture, made possible by evolving technology and a new business mindset.
As self-titled "Digital Nomads" we're not only allowed, but encouraged, to take advantage of working around the globe.
So one of our Rebels, Kris, decided to start adventuring and documented his journey.
2016 was not just the year of video, it marked the explosion of live video on every major social media platform. Facebook launched first with live video one year ago back in March 2016, where the format quickly became popular among users. Google announced support for 4K live streaming on YouTube. And, as 2016 came to a close, Instagram rolled out its version of live video Stories while Twitter, which owns Periscope, decided to finally bring live-streaming functionality into its main app.
The spread of live video should surprise no one given the engagement stats: People comment 10x more on Facebook Live videos than regular videos.
October 2016 marked one year of working from home for me. Before that, my 20s were spent in a have-to-be-there-even-on-Thanksgiving news station and a clock-watching ad agency. Now, people ask me all the time: How do I like working from home, and how do I do it?
I love it, I never want to go back, and it's a lot easier. If you don't feel comfortable working from home at least some of the time, take 2017 to get more used to it.
At RebelMouse, we make it our mission to give you back your organic growth. Still, we know the idea of pay-to-play on social media, especially on Facebook, isn't going away anytime soon. The average user spends 20 minutes a day on Facebook and 80% of marketers are investing in social ads in 2017. So having an allocated budget for Facebook is a near-mandatory strategy for content distribution.
The good news is you can make your dollar stretch on the platform. Whether you've already implemented a robust spending strategy for Facebook, or you're just getting started, here's a tip to try:
Here's a great little throwback fact: When Facebook advertising first began, the only way you could target by interests, locations, etc. was through dark posts. Now, those features are available with every ad. So what are dark posts in 2017?
Dark posts, or "unpublished posts," as Facebook calls them, do not post to your Facebook Page's wall or appear organically in the news feed of your current followers. The perks of dark posting are pretty obvious for big brands and e-commerce Pages, but every advertiser can benefit from experimenting with them too. But if you're new to the Facebook ad game, it can be a little abstract to learn. So, if you're a rookie or just need a refresher (like I sometimes do), let's shine the light back on the benefits of dark posts and how to create them.
Does your site generate consistent traffic? Can you confidently identify a loyal audience that craves your content?
If the answer is yes to either question, then consider your content valuable and, therefore, monetizable. But with banner blindness and ad blocking on the rise, your monetization strategy needs to go beyond slapping banners across your site. In an era where advertisers closely monitor ROI and push for quality audience engagement, success requires an integrated advertising approach that enhances the overall user experience on your site.
In this guide, you'll learn the following:
At RebelMouse, we talk a lot about distribution: distribution tools, distributed audiences, distributed publishing. As we kick off 2017, we want to make what we mean clear when we say "distributed publishing."
A Rebel's Definition of Distributed Publishing
The seamless process of creating and optimizing content for maximized audience reach across channels and devices.
In other words, create once, publish everywhere that matters.
At RebelMouse, we love the crazy, fast, ever-changing world of the internet. Founded by Paul Berry, the original CTO of The Huffington Post, and backed by new media experts from BuzzFeed and Buddy Media, we have an avant-garde view of how publishing works.
Check out these 10 statements that define the RebelMouse mindset for 2017, designed to get you psyched to share your stories with the world.
Updated: December 28, 2016
Being a Rebel Socialite Means Taking an Integrated Approach to Content Creation + Distribution
...Maximize Your Growth When You Hit Publish
At RebelMouse, we are obsessed with content distribution, which is why our platform is designed to enable a publishing process built on social sharing. We embrace the idea that the potential for audience growth is much larger when you consider all of the people who care about what you create beyond your domain. With functionality to create and distribute stories across social networks, the RebelMouse platform empowers users to maximize this ecosystem.
The mission of scaling an engaged audience is exciting and rewarding. At RebelMouse, we believe that achieving success isn't an accident, it's a decision. The key is to effectively blend the art and the science in the editorial process. Here are five best practices for growth that you can apply to your strategy.
1. Own Your Identity
Organic reach isn't dead. You just need to know how to adapt to recent changes. We have you covered.
According to Social Media Examiner's 2016 Social Media Marketing Industry Report, 55% of marketers chose Facebook as the most important social network, and 86% regularly use Facebook Ads. Plus, 67% of marketers plan on increasing their Facebook marketing activities. So it's no secret marketers are eager to learn how to get back some of the organic reach that has been lost in recent years. We created this guide as a way to help you navigate around these changes and start growing on Facebook again.
In this guide, you'll learn the following:
RebelMouse Founder and CEO (and former CTO of The Huffington Post) Paul Berry has obsessed about contagious media — and how people consume it — for decades. He chatted with Steve Rubel, Chief Content Strategist at Edelman, for Rubel's podcast on all things storytelling, Content Convergence.
Click here to listen to it for free and get up to speed on ad blocking, audience growth, and the future of media companies and marketing in 2016.
In addition (and only in supplementary fashion!), digest some of the key points in our true gif-listicle form.
A lot has happened in the social sphere this year — but the rise of video, especially readable video, is the most impactful content shift of 2016. It's part of the the mobile takeover. This year, mobile is responsible for 65% of digital media time, making desktop a "secondary touch point," according to Marketing Land.
Videos are super easy to watch on mobile, and, so far, they've morphed into two very friendly beasts.
3 Simple Steps to Social Content Success
Building a social media content strategy is an important exercise to make sure you're getting the most out of your social posts. To get you started, we've created a set of guidelines that will help you kick start your strategic efforts.
In this guide, you'll learn the following:
These days there isn't a headline or piece of content on the whole wide web that isn't influenced, in some way, by data. In fact, for companies whose success depends on courting and converting customers online, big data is now (arguably) the most important competitive advantage to gain in the digital marketplace. Just look at the tooth-and-nail battle between social platforms like Facebook and Twitter for marketing dollars. Though active user figures are important, it is the maturity of each platform's ad product — that is, its ability to leverage data to enable brands to engage with consumers in relevant and authentic ways — that determines revenue potential.
Listicles are eye catching, easy to read, and, most importantly, consumers love to share them.
Source: Social Media Examiner, 2015
Here is your chance to get time with one of the few people in the world that have built important, massively viral properties on the internet.
RebelMouse is committed to helping brands and media organizations make the most of their digital presence, so we're opening up our CEO, Paul Berry, for one-on-one strategy sessions so you can learn the trade secrets of the best media brands in the world and apply them to your own business.
Upgrade alert. Two new major changes to our platform will make your publishing experience that much more customizable and easy to use.
We know the importance of A/B testing headlines and social copy is sooo 2011 — and while we've got that stuff down too, we've taken it a step further.
What Does It Mean for Editorial Teams?
Editorial teams are waking up post earthquake and realizing they have exactly the wrong ratio of writers to video editors. The key for writers and reporters is to shift. They learned to tell their story in slideshows and then adapted those into listicles. The best writers then realized readable video needs to be written and are now out there writing it.
"More people meant more ideas, greater densities meant that ideas could spread more readily… These developments increased the rate of growth of economic productivity and technological." — Nick Bostrom
We are witnessing an unprecedented change in the way ideas are discovered, created, and spread. The infrastructure for ideas and content to reach audiences at speed and scale today is unlike anything we've ever seen before. Nick Bostrom illustrated the explosion in population and production beautifully in his excellent book titled "SuperIntelligence: Paths, Danger, Strategies."
This is the second part of a three-part series on the path to distributed publishing. ICYMI, here's a brief history of how we got here.
What Does It Mean for Websites?
Websites are not dead. But their purpose has changed, and their focus has shifted. Great websites are now social companions — built to help build loyalty and depth with the much smaller group of readers reached who've fallen in love with a publisher's voice.
The way people have found content on the internet has gone through some very clear phases. Understanding our history is vital to understanding the present and being able to anticipate the available paths of the present into the future.
Should we talk about AOL?
Content creators have one, big challenge: content nobody sees. That's why we're obsessed with distribution. We truly believe if you funnel your content to platforms in a methodical way, you'll see organic growth — because audience development isn't a hope, it's a strategy.
That's why we created Rebel Discovery. Discovery uses proprietary technology to find communities on social platforms that would be interested in sharing your content. You'll see results that won't come up through native searching alone.
During its annual F8 conference, Facebook revealed RebelMouse as a platform partner to publish Instant Articles, which is now available to any media company or brand.
Facebook introduced Instant Articles to create a faster, more immersive and more engaging experience for people consuming content within the Facebook app. We've been working closely with Facebook since last fall to build integration with the social network's new format.