They’re doing what mainstream media won’t.
Think what you’d like about Breitbart, I certainly have some strong opinions, but don’t let that cloud your judgment. Breitbart’s success can’t just be attributed to their viewpoints, as other right-wing sites don’t pull similar numbers.
Breitbart is so successful because they’ve taken the time to understand what their audience’s needs are and they’ve met them. Here are four things that Breitbart’s website does that mainstream outlets should apply.
1. Turned comments on
Not only that, they advertise the number of comments in the article thumbnail.
When an article seems to be blowing up in the comments, viewers can be drawn in not just by the story, but also the discussion happening below it.
2. Publicize Facebook shares
It’s hard to miss the Facebook share button when you open an article. It’s right there under the title.
By advertising how many people have shared the story on Facebook, Breitbart readers will feel more empowered to share the story themselves as they have 107 thousand other people doing it along with them. They’ll feel the strength in those numbers.
3. Add the option to listen to the article
The majority of Breitbart articles can be listened to in 3 minutes or less. This gives readers more options to consume their media. Beyond that, one in five adults in the US are considered illiterate (which is pretty crazy). If you are in this 20%, Breitbart seems like an easy choice for one’s preferred news outlet.
4. Strong article titles
Titles are in big bold letters. They also use a strong negative tone. After doing a review of 20 news sites, towardsdatascience.com found that Breitbart ranked 5th in the use of negative wording. Combining the apocalyptic tone many titles take with all caps letters, viewers will certainly feel the urgency and desire to click. That’s what Breitbart’s editors are trying to drive.
Breitbart has altered itself to fit the needs of its audience. Accessible, discussion-focused, and community-driven. If other news outlets don’t start listening to the very people who pay their bills, Breitbart might start moving up in that ranking list.