BuzzFeed News launches on Subtext to talk COVID-19 with audience
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BuzzFeed News has launched a coronavirus-focused text conversation between their editors and audience, allowing subscribers to get the latest coronavirus news and to weigh in with questions or experiences.
“We’re excited to try Subtext’s messaging platform so that we can help our readers stay up to date on what’s happening, and just as importantly, so they can ask us questions and help us stay informed on what they’re seeing where they live,” said Mat Honan, BuzzFeed News’ San Francisco Bureau Chief.
At a time when quick, but accurate information is most needed, texting offers a way to connect with audiences in a space that feels safe for them to ask questions, is free of disinformation and trolls, and is the platform many of us use the most.
“At BuzzFeed News, we always like to try new ways to reach our audience where they are, and text messaging is a natural way to do that,” said Honan.
“This isn’t the first time we’ve tried something like this. We had an in-house tool we used during the 2016 conventions that ran on Facebook Messenger,” he said. “And of course in our The Stakes 2020 newsletter, we’ve leaned into this format to interview candidates and other political figures. So this is a natural evolution of things we’ve already been experimenting with.”
Texting thrives in breaking news environments. It takes us a matter of minutes to get started texting on Subtext. It requires no design work, just the reporting you already have. And the communication is happening on a medium with an over a 90% open rate.