GWADS Best of Best
2022 Award Submissions
Print or Digital Retention
City: United States
Daily audited circulation size: 2.6 M
Sunday audited circulation size: 3 M
The goal was to communicate added value to subscribers and increase e-Edition usage through monthly email communications as well as an onsite ad unit.
Beginning in January 2021, the Gannett Retention team partnered with Studio Gannett and Tecnavia to add one or two glossy magazines or tabs as bonus content to every local market and USA TODAY's e-Editions. The magazines and tabs vary in titles such as A Year in Defense, MLB Preview, GO Escape, National Parks, America Renewed, Hispanic Living, and more for a total of 17 magazines throughout 2021 – all valued on stands at $5 each for an approximate value add of $85. The goal was to communicate this added value to subscribers and increase e-Edition usage through monthly email communications as well as an onsite ad unit.
The emails deployed to active subscribers were some of the top performing engagement emails from 2021. Average Open Rates were 35-47% with click-through-rates averaging 5-9% contributing to a 6pp lift in e-Edition users and over 12M pageviews, averaging 121 pageviews per user, with an average session duration of 10 minutes, and 5 sessions per user (via Exact Target and Google Analytics). Additionally, these emails deploy on Saturdays contributing to a noticeable lift in e-Edition usage over the weekend, traditionally lower engagement days for e-Edition. This project has been such a success that we decided to add all of the Studio Gannett titles in 2022.
Las Vegas Journal
City: Las Vegas, NV
Daily audited circulation size: 87,201
Sunday audited circulation size: 105,642
To engage readers by sharing upcoming content, by cross-functionally with the newsroom to develop a content focused subscriber engagement strategy.
Deliverable: A weekend preview email sent to all subscribers sent every Friday afternoon highlighting print and digital feature stories.
Average open rate is 40% (comparable to the daily eEdition email). Numerous subscribers reached out with positive feedback regarding the Weekend Preview.
- “I really enjoyed receiving this email. Thank you, RJ for providing a preview into what is coming on Sunday.”
- "Thank you for providing a preview into the weekend paper, it has pointed me to articles that I may not have normally read.”
Future plans: This campaign has sparked more content focused subscriber engagement strategies, like a top 5 articles from the previous weekend email we are currently developing.
Las Vegas Journal
Daily audited circulation size: -
Sunday audited circulation size: -
Retain subscribers that are being price increased.
We revised our price increase letter to include color and a visual representation of what happens when you pay your subscription. We wanted to show subscribers how they are an integral part of our newsrooms and local news.
We just implemented.
The Charlotte Observer
City: Charlotte, NC
Daily audited circulation size: 25,763
Sunday audited circulation size: 39,259
To quickly engage with plus subscribers, who, within the past week, called in to stop their subscription and to have them reconsider, with a combination bargain rate and a complimentary $10 gift card.
Data is gathered and emails are sent daily as customers call to stop their 6-day, Wednesday-Sunday or Sunday-only subscription. The customer clicks through the email, fills out a short form, and is rewarded with a renewed value subscription and a $10 gift card to the retailer or restaurant of their choice.
The program started in late March 2022 in six markets with 214 emails sent each day. It has since increased to 625 emails daily across all 28 markets.
During a 60-day period, this has resulted in 107 stop-saves across all markets (25 in Charlotte), as the program continues to gain momentum each day
City: Spokane, WA
Daily audited circulation size: 23,397
Sunday audited circulation size: 37,648
A goal for 2021 was to increase the amount of active digital subscriptions from current print subscribers, who automatically receive digital access through their subscription. We also wanted to increase engagement with both our print and digital subscribers.
The Spokesman-Review brainstormed premium digital content that would appease to traditional readers as well as new readers.
The Chronicle was a beloved piece of Spokane history, so what if The Spokesman went out with the new and in with the old? The Spokesman hypothesized that print subscribers would happily activate their digital account to read the Spokane Daily Chronicle revived a subscriber-only e-edition. The Chronicle would include access to breaking news before the next day’s paper, features of archived Chronicle frontpages published that day and exclusive regional and national content.
The Spokane Daily Chronicle launched on July 12, 2021. By the end of the year, The Spokesman increased its active digital subscribers by 9%. Active digital subscribers include print and digital subscribers that completed the online profile to their subscription. The Spokesman’s data platform, Mather’s Listener platform, analyzed subscriber retention for the first three months following launch and controlled for tenure for a five-year period. Data also omitted subscriptions after the launch of the Chronicle to keep sample size consistent.
Mather’s analysis projected that subscribers who read both The Spokesman and The Chronicle e-edition had a 5% greater retention rate than users who interacted with neither during the three-month period. Those who read only The Chronicle e-edition had a 3% greater retention rate than subscribers who read neither. The standings remain consistent over a five-year tenure period. Mather’s analysis also found that the impact of The Chronicle e-edition was equal to that of The Spokesman’s e-edition.
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