AWS for M&E Blog

AWS is How: The Globe and Mail delivers personalized news content recommendations

In the information age, it seems like there’s an unending amount of digital media online. With millions of forums, blogs, and gossip sites permeating the internet, you want to be certain that the news sources you trust are relevant, reliable, and accurate.

Since 1844, The Globe and Mail (The Globe) has covered business, politics, sports, and human-interest stories across Canada, with a mission to inspire and inform Canadians through courageous, empathetic, and honest journalism. Working alongside AWS, The Globe has put its audience first by expanding its digital experience and adopting cloud solutions that help it deliver personalized, engaging content to its weekly readership of six million.

To unlock more value for its readers, the news company built a powerful article recommendation engine that suggests news articles based on topics that align with individual reader’s interests, from sports to arts and culture and more. Now, its readers can easily find and follow news stories that they want, and if there’s an update to a news story that they’ve read before, it will recommend it to them at the top of the page. Since implementing this engine, The Globe has boosted its click-through rates by 25 percent compared to suggesting articles by popularity.

Using AWS technologies, The Globe also developed and released the first version of its mobile application, The Globe News App, in under 3 months—making it easier for its readers to get the latest news on the go. With an intuitive interface, its readers can easily set up notifications for breaking news and download articles to read at their convenience when their devices are offline.

And by working on a scalable, cloud infrastructure, The Globe has applied machine learning and artificial intelligence to its operations, which help its staff of editors recognize which stories have sparked its audience’s interest. Using these technologies, editors can assess which leads to follow up on with greater accuracy, helping boost subscription rates. The Globe also uses this technology to convert text articles to audio, which gives readers the ability to listen to its articles in a number of different languages, including French, English, and Mandarin. “As we work to improve the reader experience, AWS is helping us get there both quickly and cost effectively,” says Mike O’Neill, director of data science at The Globe.

To find out more about how AWS is helping businesses like The Globe and Mail expand their digital capabilities, visit Advertising & Marketing Technology on AWS.

Lisa Epstein

Lisa Epstein

Lisa Epstein is a Senior Industry Marketing Manager at Amazon Web Services.