One of the great ironies of Bleacher Report is that a site essentially founded on the mantra ‘for the fans’ operates via an extremely regimented, top-down system. While nearly every major publication now has an SEO maven on board, Bleacher Report employs an entire analytics team to comb through reams of data, determining who wants to read what, and when, at an almost granular level. In this way, the site can determine the ideal times to post certain types of stories — thus meeting a demand that doesn’t yet exist, but will.
Reverse-engineering content to fit a pre-written headline is a Bleacher Report staple. ‘The analytics team basically says, ‘Hey, we think this is going to be trending, these eight to 10 terms will be trending in the next couple of days,’‘ says a former editor for the site. ‘We say thank you, and we as editors come up with the headlines and pass those on to writers to write the content.’