Frequently Asked Questions
about Metrics for News

General questions

What is Metrics for News?

Metrics for News is an analytics tool that aligns journalism metrics with your editorial values and business model. Its dashboards pull data from your current analytics services and social media platforms into one place, identifying patterns that show how to better engage, monetize and serve audiences with your journalism.

How is Metrics for News different from other analytics tools?

Metrics for News is a strategic tool that complements real-time analytics. Its primary use is for planning and strategy. By pulling in data from a multitude of sources, Metrics for News can identify overarching patterns across all your data sources that individual analytics tools can’t do on their own.

Metrics for News also has unique customization and analysis features, including:

  • Engagement Scores that let you blend many metrics into one custom number that gives you a simple yet comprehensive view of your data
  • Artificial intelligence that categorizes your content and identifies patterns
  • The ability for your users to evaluate content against larger strategic organizational goals, we call Newsroom Priorities

How does Metrics for News measure engagement? What is an Engagement Score?

We think there’s no single metric that tells the whole story, so we blend several key metrics (including pageviews, time on page, social and mobile data) into a single Engagement Score. This gives you a metric that is both comprehensive and simple.

Each news organization has the ability to customize different Engagement Scores that reflect their priorities. You have options to use default scores we’ve tested with many markets, as well as the ability to create your own.

What kinds of news organizations use Metrics for News?

Metrics for News is highly customizable and compatible with any news organization and any CMS. We’ve worked with small community newsrooms and major metropolitan ones, as well as corporate chains.

What can a news organization accomplish by using Metrics for News?

Those who have the most success with Metrics for News typically go into the program with a mindset of transformation. Metrics for News can help you:

  • Learn how and why readers engage with each author or team’s content
  • Track which journalism qualities build loyalty and trigger subscriptions
  • Segment key audiences (by location, age group, etc.)
  • Access custom funnel analytics
  • Identify what types of journalism to do more, do less or do differently
  • Provide analytics dashboards tailored to each person’s role in your organization

Who in the news organization should use this tool?

Ideally everyone in the newsroom — from reporters and editors to upper-level managers — as well as those on the business side who need data about audience reach and consumer revenue. The dashboards can be filtered to show you what you care about most, whether you’re looking for data on a single story, an overall beat, or the newsroom as a whole.

Compatibility questions

Which data sources is Metrics for News compatible with?

Metrics for News can integrate with Google Analytics, Adobe Analytics (Omniture), your own data warehouse or DMP, Chartbeat, Facebook and Twitter, as well as commenting platforms. And we can import your content through RSS feeds, or custom feeds or files you may provide.

Which content management systems is Metrics for News compatible with?

Metrics for News can work with any CMS, because it exists outside of your systems as a web-based application.

Logistics questions

How much does Metrics for News cost?

There are multiple payment tiers for Metrics for News, depending on which services you’d like to use. All are affordable, compared with other analytics tools — Metrics for News is run by the American Press Institute, a nonprofit that wants to provide this service as widely and cheaply as possible for the benefit of the news industry. If cost is a barrier for your news organization, we also may have grant-funded subsidies at times to help cover some of the costs. Contact us for pricing information tailored to your organization.

Are there free trials?

Unfortunately we can’t offer free trials due to the amount of work it takes to set up and customize the application for each news organization. But we do offer demos — contact us to set one up.

How does Metrics for News track characteristics of newsroom content?

We track journalistic characteristics of your content so you can analyze which kinds of journalism drive engagement with each audience. Some of these characteristics can be determined based on how your stories are categorized in your CMS. We can also categorize topics using artificial intelligence. And we can write custom rules that categorize content according to a variety of factors.

Can we track other content characteristics manually?

While you could use Metrics for News with completely automated categorization, you have the option to manually categorize certain subjective story types, such as those that elicit emotional reactions, those with practical relevance, the originality of your story ideas, etc.

Interested? Have other questions?