Day 2 Sponsor Welcome: Learn about Microsoft Start’s new publisher program
4:03PM Jun 20, 2023
With that, let's get started with today's program. So, I am so thankful for our sponsors. And we've been talking about them throughout the conference. And this is a new sponsor for the collaborative journalism Summit, which I was so excited about. So I would like to welcome Vir chan to the stage from Microsoft to tell you more about Microsoft start.
Thank you, I could not resist putting the T shirts to start off the slide because, and I was a little disappointed you guys didn't have a store? So I guess have to get it online. But yes, thank you. We're very excited to be sponsoring this session. For the first time. I'm happy to be giving this lightning talk first thing in the morning.
And I am with the publisher product team. Yes, my team is also called the partner happiness and growth team. No pressure at all. I've been in the journalism business since the 20th century. J school graduate. I don't know if the other Jays a Berkeley J school graduate. Oh, there I met one yesterday. Anyway. And I've been with I've involved in a lot of products besides being on the publisher products team, working with like LinkedIn and the democracy forward team, which I'll mention later on, and Microsoft 365. For journalist, I know that I've talked to Stockton University, folks about that already. So if you have questions about that, I'm happy to talk about it. But in general, right. Microsoft's mission, you might have heard of our motto might not but it's empower every person, every plan and on every person and every organization on the planet to do more. And part of that is supporting journalism. And Brad Smith, our president in 2020, on LinkedIn released the top 10 policy initiatives for the decade journalism was in the top and I'm very happy about that again, because I've been in the business and you know, had my first buyouts
it at the at something called Knight Ridder. And this recent they recently relaunched that team, the democracy forward team who will be at i and n days, by the way, a journalism hub that connects to many programs, that might be a benefit to you guys, again, some of the programs I mentioned, some things like Microsoft philanthropy that has, you know, grants for nonprofits. So do look in, we tend to be kind of discreet about our many offerings, because it probably we have too many. So please do check it out. But one of the things that I did want to talk about is Microsoft start, what is Microsoft start is basically MSN, right? Microsoft has been in the publishing business one way or another, since like the mid 1990s, when they pushed out CDs, mailed CDs of Windows, and there was something called Microsoft network in there. That was the first offerings of news from publishers. And we partnered with publishers from the get go and do an ad revenue share. And so we've moved up, you know, to, we pushed out Microsoft start, because we did something like personalized feeds, right. And I can talk about that a little bit later. But what that basically means is, instead of just a traditional portal like MSN, we can push out news and information through various surfaces like the Bing app, you might have heard of it. The Windows devices, there's about a 1 billion outlook and things like that. So it just really, we have half a billion monthly active users around the world. And there's 1 billion Windows devices. So there's an expansion of the audience. And so we wanted to be able to kind of reopen and join our network of at the time 4500 partners represent sorry, 1200 partners representing 4500 brands. And that was in October 2020. We've grown since then, especially targeting independent, you know, freelancers and local newsrooms, and that's still an initiative that we have as to really focus on local news. And I am really happy that we're able to look into diversifying the platform and giving opportunities that had been afforded to sort of larger companies. And part of the ways to do that was to, you know, change the way we did contracts and change the way that we did sign ons. And we even have a WordPress plugin. And I know that we've got some Microsoft start partners here, Chloe, from basically the news. Actually, if you go to the Microsoft 365, for journalists website, you're going to see her prominently displayed and she rhapsodizes about data journalism. So hit her up, hit her up for some tips. So if you guys of course we are we do have a queue and we're still in beta. But we still really want more newsrooms and individuals, you know, if you're a freelancer or whatnot, to you know, reach our audience, and it is ad revenue share, we are always experimenting with new things like support and lead generation and things like that. So, you know, we want to get to a place where you can just set it and forget it and just be part of your distribution plans be part of your syndication plans. So yeah, we licensed the content, we combine and curate it to an aggregate audience around the world and then we drive the audience. It's our it's on us to drive the audience engagement and monetization. And again, hopefully you just set it and forget it. And don't do anything too naughty. This will be in an future newsletters. We'll have some More information. But basically aka.ms/start Publishing is our short link. You don't have to memorize it. But you'll get it. You'll join a queue. We it's, it's been popular. So we're processing the applications. We do have a user guide so you can see what it's like just come to the site. And yeah, and then you just join. So I hope you guys will consider it as part of the, you know, are, you know, to further your reach, and also just to bolster and diversify the voices of journalism in Microsoft and for our audiences, thank you. Oh, by the way, we still have cooling towels. They are made from post consumer recycled bottles and they can be recycled in some communities as well some notebooks so please feel free to bring one home