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Data-Hungry Mail Online Mulls Original-Video Move

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CANNES - Look out, world. Having quickly become the planet's most-visited newspaper website, Mail Online plans to ramp up its digital video offering beyond its core categories of entertainment, lifestyle and breaking world news.

"We'll continue to expand the types of video programming we're deploying," the title's global chief marketing officer Sean O'Neal told Beet.TV in this interview during this week's Cannes Lions advertising conflab. "We're even looking at doing more original programming. We do think that's an opportunity."

London-based site publisher A&N Media has surprised industry watchers by turning its famously right-leaning UK mid-market tabloid Daily Mail into a segment-beating phenomenon. Having formed editorial teams in New York and LA two years ago, Mail Online has become a phenomenon, with roughly 50 million unique monthly web visitors, according to comScore.

O'Neal says reasons for the success are threefold:
  1. "It has been completely operated independently. Martin Clarke, our publisher, started it up very entrepreneurially and built a purely digital publishing business."
  2. "Unlike a newspaper, you can print as much content as you like."
  3. "We've got great technology. We're very data-oriented. Within minutes of publishing a story, we actually have enough feedback to know whether that story is going to be a winner or a loser."
Now he is planning to add video content marketing opportunities to an advertiser line-up that already includes pre-roll spots.

For a deep-dive behind Mail Online's strategy, see the publisher's easy-to-read recent investor presentation.