Saturday, 7 April 2007

[ 7. The NME Website | Homepage ]

[ The NME Website ]
The NME homepage invites the readers of its magazine, which has tended towards the indie demographic and has swayed away from the wider genre appeal that the magazine first started with, as it has been criticised by the press recently, an example of narrowcasting in progress. It has always been a huge support for upcoming British bands such as Kaiser Chiefs, The Libertines and Franz Ferdinand. The website provides music news, reviews, downloads, merchandise and message boards. The website also features Gig ticket searches, competitions and various feeds from eBay and other mainstream online auctions and shops, to compare prices on certain merchandise without having to leave the site. The large amount of content on the site to do with all aspects of indie music culture has supported NME and made it one of, if not the largest British music magazine. The sorts of Flash animated adverts that are littered around the site are aimed at NME’s target audience and advertise such things as internet and soft and alcoholic drinks.

[ In Detail ]
The Homepage is made up a number of features. The basic layout of the website is a static navigation banner at the top, with links to each different area of the website, and down the right hand side, there is a list of the less frequently visited links and also the featured links. On the left hand side running down most of the centre too is the main content of the website, with hooks and links to various articles and features.
NME, like Xfm has its own radio station and this is available online from the website, on top of that, the listeners can also view immediate full music videos on the radio’s playlist if they register with the site, thus helping NME’s online surveillance and vertically integrating the audience to NME, these are convenient and small files to allow faster downloads, faster satisfaction but less quality. This, coupled with the email newsletter is able to raise awareness of the site, and keep its audience coming back. Also along these lines is the RSS feed that the site has, which feeds information to the audience automatically. NME puts new media technology to its full use, when it holds awards and at many gigs, it is able to transmit these live via webcam [ webcam ] to viewers and listeners on the website.
Adding to the message boards, there is also a section where people can place word adverts free to advertise, usually for band members. This is an added incentive for new bands to align themselves with NME, and through this, vertical integration and a loyalty can grow between NME and bands in question, thus possibly granting NME sneak previews and other things in future.
The NME website is very intent on gaining loyalty with its demographic, and providing a comprehensive one-stop-shop website to cater for all their needs from lifestyle tips to music downloads, showing good use of vertical integration and online surveillance, whilst still keeping the basic interactivity must-haves onsite too.

No comments: