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Posts Tagged ‘Gregory Gittrich’ Seeing Video, Social Growth

NBCNews.comDespite MSN referral traffic ending two months ago, is on pace to have its strongest month of the year in video and page views, VP of News & Product for Digital Gregory Gittrich told staff in an email today.

Gittrich, who spoke with us last month about’s strategy of driving video viewers, tells TVNewser the strong September is due to a variety of factors.

“We’re breaking significant stories, delivering in-depth coverage, and using video, animation, graphics and text to provide unique takeaways and perspectives,” Gittrich said. “We’ve recruited a great team from an amazing variety of backgrounds. And we’re experimenting as we go, both in how we tell stories and how we deliver them. All of that is fueling our growth.”

While acknowledging a loss in desktop visitors, Gittrich’s cites significant growth compared to January.

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Mediabistro Job FairLand your next big gig! Join us on January 27 at the Altman Building in New York City for an incredible opportunity to meet with hiring managers from the top New York media companies, network with other professionals and industry leaders, and land your next job. Register now!’s Traffic Declines as MSN Referrals End

NBCAs we reported, the month of July marked the end of’s referral traffic from MSN, with network executives expecting a sharp drop in traffic as a result.

According to Comscore, from January, which is right before relaunched, through the end of July, the website’s unique visitors traffic is down -28%. In that timespan, it lost 12,222,000 visitors.

“The loss of the Microsoft referrals was factored into our strategy and business plan when we took full ownership of our digital properties,” Gregory Gittrich, head of NBC News digital’s news and product unit tells TVNewser.

“We are focused on building a highly engaged audience, driving video views, and reaching our users wherever they are — and we’re encouraged by the goals we’ve already exceeded.”

Comparing June, which was the last full month the site received MSN referrals, to July, the site was down -19%. It should be noted, these numbers are for desktop traffic, not mobile traffic, for which MSN referral traffic didn’t apply.

Numbers were positive for, which also lost its MSN traffic referrals. From January through the end of July, the site was up +2% in unique visitors.

Inside the New Refresh of Six Months After Relaunch

NBC B and F

Back in February, relaunched with a new look, improved back-end technology, and a goal of “tearing down the walls that traditionally have divided TV and digital.”

Just six months later, the network’s digital homepage has another new look. The goal this time is to improve the user experience.

“We found that audience was looking for more scannable headlines, greater density [more stories on the homepage], and a faster load time on the homepage,” Gregory Gittrich, head of NBC News Digital’s news and product unit tells TVNewser.

The changes stem from user surveys on a test site. “We’ll be using going forward to try new things and share new ideas. It’s not going away. Whenever we test new things, we’ll ask the audience to weigh in, to look at the feedback, to measure the data, and then we’ll decide based on that whether to roll out a new feature or to launch a new product.”

From January through June, unique visitor traffic to is down -12% (43,024,000 in January vs. 38,256,000 in June) according to Comscore. NBC News cites a gradual loss in referral traffic from Microsoft portal MSN. Microsoft and NBC parted ways two years ago. The audience split even more when and launched unique sites. ( had been the online home of both NBC News and MSNBC cable.)

Gittrich expects an even greater traffic decline later this week when July’s traffic numbers are finalized and MSN referrals to come to an end. But Gittrich says the addition of original video has been a boon to the site. Video views are up +249% since January. The network also notes visitors are staying on the site longer and engaging more with content.

The Ticker: Kelly,, CNNI

  • Fueled by an extended interview with several members of Bowe Bergdahl‘s platoon, Megyn Kelly‘s “The Kelly File” topped all of cable news in both total viewers and the A25-54 demographic Thursday. It was the third time this week the show has topped “The O’Reilly Factor” in the demo and the first time ever Kelly has beaten O’Reilly in total viewers. It was also the highest rated total-viewer delivery of 2014 for Kelly.

  • today launched a beta site building off the site’s February redesign. “We believe in experimenting and testing as we develop new products and features,” executive editor of Gregory Gittrich wrote in a note to staff this afternoon.

  • CNN International has announced four brands — Hublot, Hyundai Motor, Embratur and Nikon — will sponsor multi-platform coverage of the 2014 World Cup.

5 Things to Know About The New

Homepage DesktopAfter a year of work, the new debuts overnight tonight, just in time for premium traffic coming from the Sochi Olympics coverage.

At an unveiling this morning at 30 Rock, NBC News President Deborah Turness says the new site is about “tearing down the walls that traditionally have divided TV and digital.” The new site will be a “continuous consumption model” that continues the story whether it was born first digitally or it originally aired on TV.

TVNewser attended this morning’s event. Here are our 5 takeaways from the new site…

Read more, Make a Slew of Hires

NBC News Digital has made a slew of personnel announcements today, affecting both and, which will launch this Summer. has named Hilary Frey editorial director for news, while has named Dafna Linzer managing editor. Frey was most recently editor-in-chief of Yahoo! News, while Linzer was a senior investigative reporter at ProPublica.

In addition, has promoted Dick Belsky to Managing Editor of News. There are a number of other additions to both sites, all of them noted after the jump.

Note from VP and executive editor Richard Wolffe:
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NBC News Digital Names Editors For,

Now that NBC News Digital has two different news websites to work with, the company is solidifying the leadership at the sites. will be led by Gregory Gittrich as VP and executive editor. Gittrich joins from the NBC Owned Stations group, where he had been VP of digital media. He will report to senior VP and chief digital officer Vivian Schiller.

As for regular MSNBC guest and political analyst Richard Wolffe will become VP and executive editor for the site, still slated to launch early next year. He will report jointly to MSNBC president Phil Griffin and Schiller.

Elsewhere: Jennifer Brown has been promoted to VP an executive editor of She had been GM of the site. Ryan Osborn has been promoted to VP of digital innovation. Andrew Locke has been upped to VP of mobile and devices, while John Keegan has been named VP of technology strategy.

More below.

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