Digital audience targets can be good for local journalism by challenging newsrooms to make sure their stories are important to readers

David Higgerson says digital audience goals don’t have to be a bad thing for local journalism, if they’re carried out in the right way. Audience targets for analytics, such as traffic, force journalists to think about how readers will receive their content, and newsrooms have always been judged on how audiences receive their content, Higgerson says. Higgerson says: “Journalists should always be asking whether they are doing something because it will interest readers, or just because they’ve always done it.”