PressApp message

A mobile app which can be used by newsrooms to serve up their digital content to users, as well as request and receive user-generated content from users is to launch next month.

PressApp, which has been produced by Videobuilder, will offer publishers both a branded mobile app of their digital content for readers and/or a content management system which newsrooms can use to send out requests for photos or video from app users, according to business development director at Videobuilder, Andrew Petherick.

Journalists can also use the app to file content on the go, with content sent direct to the editorial team for consideration, as seen below.

Moderation area PressApp

Petherick said the content management system element of the app "allows the editorial teams to request more content from their readers," he added.

Once content is submitted, either by users or the publication's own journalists, editors can reject or approve it. If approved, the content can then be posted onto a range of platforms, such as YouTube and Facebook as well as services such as Atex and Brightcove.

When a newsroom is on the hunt for user-generated content, an editor can send a message to users of the app detailing the request, which will display as a message on the user's phone and sit in the app's inbox.

"It doesn't matter whether you're a magazine or newspaper, if you're a publisher you've got a problem which is getting hold of decent content," Petherick said. "It can be very tricky and what PressApp does is helps newspapers request and gather this content from mobile."

When content has been approved, the newsroom can deliver a message to the user who supplied it thanking them for their contribution with a link to where the content appears online. The message can also encourage the user to share the link with their social networks.

This "viral element" of the model is "the most important part of what we're trying to do", Petherick told, which he added is to "help regional newspapers drive new and fresh readers to their website through their existing readers' social networks".

There is also commercial opportunity for newspaper advertising teams, he said, with the ability to add advertising to the user messages, such as offering a discount at a shop as a reward for published UGC.

The app also offers geo-located advertising opportunities using geo-fencing, which enables the newspaper to set up "fences" around specific areas or buildings. Then when an app user enters this area they will be messaged, which may contain information about the area or building, and could also contain an advertising message.

Geo-targeted messages can also be used to send UGC requests to users based in certain areas.

The app, which is due to launch next month, is free for users to download. The newspaper will pay an annual fee for either the content aggregation service alone, or a higher fee for the added use of the app as a UGC tool.

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