NewsCred Helps Brands Become Publishers

Syndication platform partners with real-time ad platform Flite

With the brands-as-publishers movement well under way, new partnerships are popping up to help marketers engage audiences and allow publishers to spread their content further across the Web. Today, NewsCred, a content licensing and syndication platform, is joining the ranks of recent content partnerships to pair with the display ad platform Flite to bring real-time news content to brands everywhere.

If you've spent time on the Internet browsing for news, there's a decent chance you've run into some content syndicated by NewsCred. Boasting over 750 publishers, the platform has agreements to license content from blue chip publications like The Economist and Forbes as well as Reuters and the AP. Yet, NewsCred, which started out looking to connect publishers to other publishers, has found significant growth over the past year from brands looking to get into the content game. "We are constantly looking and trying to reimagine where content can go, and we saw a natural evolution while we were looking at display ads," co-founder Shafqat Islam told Adweek.

Working together with Flite's cloud-based, real-time ad marketplace, Flite Hub, NewsCred hopes to innovate in the display ad sphere to allow brands to respond to market-driven needs or events in order to provide maximum relevance to an audience.

We'll see one such example this summer with the Olympic Games, where NewsCred will help provide some major sponsors of the Summer Games with relevant updates and news content from the games to help remind audiences of a particular brand's sponsorship and keep them up-to-date with the progress in London. "It's the kind of content that helps bring your customers into your ad unit," Shafqat said of the real-time ads.

NewsCred's partnership with Flite comes at a time when there seems to be a divide in the industry between those who are doubling down on brands as publishers and those who believe that standard display advertising is still king. Yet, Shafqat doesn't see the situation as mutually exclusive. "I don't think a brand can have that special relationship with an audience without doing some publishing, but they won't stop doing fundamental advertising," he said.

Most of the consternation regarding brands as publishers comes from critics who believe that sponsored posts with brand-created content is, to a degree, deceitful, especially if it appears intertwined on a page with credible editorial content. NewsCred, however, only provides original-licensed content and as of now does not dabble in content written specifically for brands. Shafqat told Adweek though that when it comes to brand-sponsored content, "we need to give people more credit. Audiences are smart. If content is inside an ad unit, it needs to be very, very clear and attributed to the source. If we do that, people will get it."