How Badische Zeitung reaches 150,000 subscribers with the automatic evening newsletter:

Excerpt from the cover article in kress pro – a media magazine for executives:

Newsletters are very popular among newspaper publishers: they are considered effective tools to encourage readers to visit the digital offer more often and longer. And this, in turn, is an important prerequisite for them to become paid subscribers in the next step and keep subscribing to them for as long as possible in the next step.

This mechanism is confirmed by the “Badische Zeitung” (BZ): From March 2020, six evenings a week, Monday to Saturday, sends a newsletter to registered users and digital subscribers, which has led to a significant increase in the number and duration of visits to the badische-zeitung website .de.

The special feature of the Freiburg regional newspaper offensive: Readers of the newsletter will mainly find local and regional news related to their place of residence, which are sent daily in up to 200 different personalized versions. BZ also produces it with little effort on the part of the editors in a largely automated process. Markus Hofmann, head of digital content and deputy editor-in-chief, explains it for the sake of resource efficiency: “We had a stomach ache to disable one or more editors from writing their newsletters.”

1. Newsletter recipients

The technical implementation of the newsletter is the responsibility of Digital Topics, which, like the newspaper, belongs to BZ.medien Gruppe. According to Christian Weiß, a board member, today it has around 150,000 recipients. This includes the majority of the 36,000 digital subscribers, including a good 15,000 subscribers to the basic subscription. You will receive the newsletter automatically as part of your subscription, unless you actively unsubscribe. About 80 percent of subscribers remain loyal to him, according to Weiß. He talks about “super good durability”.

Other newsletter recipients are users who have registered but are not subscribers. Background: The Badische Zeitung combines freemium with the metered payment model. Registered users can read several Plus articles per month until they hit the paid wall. Anyone who signs up for the first time must opt-in to receive the newsletter if they wish to take advantage of this free quota. The total number of registrations is around 270,000, according to the newspaper, although this includes many users and inactive users.

2. Editorial concept

We bring together the highlights of the best of southern Baden, ”says Hofmann of the editorial concept. Specifically: The newsletter always has ten items, each consisting of a headline, an image, and an introductory part of the article. The first item is identical in all variants. There you can always find a reference to an article that is lead on the site at a certain time in the early evening – it could also be an article on national or international topics. “This allows us to ensure the maximum relevance of the message at the time of shipment is secure,” says Hofmann.

In turn, seven slots in the newsletter are reserved for content with local and regional reference that appeared in the 24 hours before it was sent. When registering with BZ or subscribing, please provide the postal code of your place of residence. This allows the newspaper to adapt the content of the newsletter to the origin of the recipients. For example, anyone who comes from Lörrach will be primarily informed about articles from the city and the county of Lörrach. If there are no or too few community articles, the newspaper sends content from a predefined further neighborhood. The other two items in the newsletter are also filled with domestic material.

3. The role of the value of commitment

4. Production process

5. The result of the offensive

6. Ideas for future newsletters

[…] You would like to read the entire case of the offensive Badische Zeitung newsletter. Then request a valid kress pro number.

Other cover themes in kress pro 3/2022:

Classification: newspaper, magazine, digital – the best editorial systems.

newsletter strategy: How “Badische Zeitung” already reached 150,000 subscribers thanks to personalized content.

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