2016 has been an exciting year of rapid growth and achievement for Mongabay, including organizational strengthening, expansion into new markets, and stepped-up content production.
Our efforts in 2016 have strengthened Mongabay as an institution such that we’re producing higher quality content from correspondents in more places than ever before. Our Spanish-language news service is off to a strong start, not only reaching critical new audiences, but helping us improve our English-language reporting through access to on-the-ground correspondents and contacts throughout the biodiversity hotspot of Central and South America. We launched an impact tracking system to help us better understand how our reporting is driving positive change on the ground. We are thrilled that our reporting positively impacts conservation efforts and boosts the capacity of all those who are working on behalf of our planet.
In 2016 Mongabay:
- Produced 1,300 stories in English, 2,000 in Indonesian, and 500 in Spanish.
- Translated over 300 stories into Simplified Chinese, French, German, Italian, Japanese, and Portuguese.
- Doubled the size of the staff and correspondent network, enabling us to do higher quality reporting in key locations and expanding our impact. We now have more than 180 correspondents and contributors in 50+ countries, an increase from 30 correspondents in a handful of countries just two years ago.
- Formally launched Mongabay-Latam, a Spanish-language environmental news service in Latin America, which already has 100,000 monthly readers and was honored as a finalist for Peru’s prestigious National Journalism Award in December.
- Established a bi-weekly podcast to reach new audiences and leverage the great content our news team is producing.
- Received 28 million visits across our English, Spanish, and Indonesian sites.
- Launched new special reporting projects, including Indonesian coal, Asian rhinos, Asia infrastructure, Mekong dams, global forests, and the Great Ape crisis.
- Increased our social media presence and engagement, especially on Facebook, where average weekly participation jumped 20-fold over a year ago.
- Added to our library more than 12,000 nature and wildlife photos taken by our staff.
- Had hundreds of stories republished in other media outlets, ranging from The Guardian to Pacific Standard.
- Achieved a renewal rate of 100 percent among our foundation supporters, demonstrating successful program implementation
We have big plans for 2017. Here are a few high priority areas for us in the new year:
- Video initiative and mobile app: We intend to launch a video initiative which will extend the reach of our content and engage new audiences. We’ll also roll out a new mobile app.
- Impact tracking: With the impact tracking system in place, we’ll be able to gain valuable insights on how to best use the platform and integrate it into our grant reporting, messaging, and communicating with our audience and supporters.
- Audience development and engagement: We’ll increase our emphasis on quality of readership over quantity by targeting key audiences, including decision makers and influencers in governments, the corporate sector, civil society organizations, and the media. This effort will be supported by our impact tracking system.
- Content: Mongabay intends to increase our investigative reporting, investing more resources in long-form features. For example, in January we’re launching a high profile series that will look at the effectiveness of popular conservation strategies and interventions. We’ll also continue to expand our English, Indonesian, and Spanish reporting, including adding more international correspondents.
- Education: We plan to launch a pilot education initiative that provides news articles for 3rd to 5th graders that meet Common Core and Next Generation Science Standards.
Thanks for your interest and support in 2016. We’d be grateful if you can help us do more in 2017.