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Social media is not the only pioneer of personalized feeds, most news aggregates do just the same with similar methods. Aggregation services and sites allow users to access content from multiple sources in one place. In 2021, Microsoft announced their own news aggregator, “Microsoft Start”.
The service uses Microsoft’s artificial intelligence coupled with machine learning to produce news feeds tailored to user interests. The program curates news from over 1,000 world-wide publishers. Upon first use, a user tells the aggregate what they are interested in. There are also options within the mobile app to indicate when you see a publisher or story you are not interested in. It also includes a “Personalize” button that allows a user to refine their feed at any time. Microsoft isn’t the only news aggregator out there, there are countless others out there that provide the same service and collect the same data, like Google News.
The truth is that many people find personalizations appealing and useful. It makes sense, personalization algorithms allow you to cut through the digital noise and find exactly what you are looking for almost all of the time. In fact, 74% of customers feel frustrated when digital content is not personalized. Psychologically, personalized home page feeds provide the perception of control and help people feel less overstimulated by content. This matters to not only users but advertisers. Personalized feeds can help maintain engagement on a given platform and keep people scrolling. The longer you can keep a user online, the higher the likelihood that they will stumble across an ad. Personalized feeds have been so successful to marketers that around 88% of advertisers in the United States reported seeing measurable improvements due to personalization, with more than half reporting a revenue boost greater than 10%. What’s more, is that on the consumer side, 78% of internet users in the United States reported that personally relevant content from brands increases their purchase intent.
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