Saltar para o conteúdo principal
Aceder ao painel de controlo
Não sabe ao certo por onde começar? Responda a um breve questionário para receber recomendações personalizadas.

Sharing articles to boost digital subscriptions

French daily newspaper Libération increases subscriptions with new “share with a friend” and datawall features.

50 years of provocative journalism

One of the largest daily newspapers in France, Libération – popularly known as Libé – built their reputation over 50 years by taking a strong position on social issues.

“We’re a left-oriented newspaper with a strong front page and humor, especially in the headlines,” notes CRM and Acquisition Manager Jean-Charles Thebaud. “We take risks to fight for new rights and shape a new society.”

“Some new rights Liberation has fought for include same-sex marriage, abolition of the death penalty, and a 35-hour working week,” adds Chief Operating Officer Damien Delhomme.

Like so many news publishers around the world, Libération has worked hard to engage online readers and attract subscribers. Their edgy content and bold approach to news and commentary, according to Thebaud, sets them apart from their competitors. However, attracting and retaining a loyal audience willing to pay for subscriptions has become a top priority.

To ensure financial stability and long-term sustainability, Libération began developing a new approach to customer acquisition and digital subscriptions.

Liberation-Portrait Amandine Bascoul- 7
blue cirlce
Amandine Bascoul-Romeu
"Thanks to our partnership with the GNI, we were able to go beyond our technical limitations and focus on innovative projects that can have a huge impact on business."
Executive Director, Libération

Top priority: Boosting digital subscriptions

“In recent years, Libération has reinvented itself by modernizing its editorial offerings with more investigative pieces, opinion pieces, and newsletters,” Thebaud says. They relaunched their website and mobile app in 2020 and began rethinking their acquisition funnel.

With all their editorial, product, and sales improvements, the publisher still faced one major challenge: Getting casual and engaged readers to convert to paying subscribers.

In 2021, Libération began partnering with the Google News Initiative (GNI) to improve their subscription stack, develop new tools, and create new content to grow their readership. "Thanks to our partnership with the GNI, we were able to go beyond our technical limitations and focus on innovative projects that can have a huge impact on business," says Executive Director Amandine Bascoul-Romeu.

The Libé team identified ways to bridge the gap between casual reader and paying subscriber: A datawall inviting non-subscribers to receive premium content via email, and a “share with a friend” feature allowing subscribers to give their friends a taste of Libé’s premium content.

  • 15% subscription growth over 12 months
  • 69,000 digital subscribers = +17% YoY growth
  • 17% growth in active emails in database

Free premium articles delivered to readers’ inboxes

Previously, Libération had a vendor-provided datawall in place to protect its premium content. They developed their own improved datawall solution, enabling them to bring the function in-house and expand its capabilities.

The new datawall, which launched in February 2022, invites non-subscribers to enter their email address to access premium articles, which are then emailed to them. “By agreeing to receive emails from Liberation, the reader enters a nurturing cycle,” Thebaud explains. Using automated marketing tools, the newspaper offers readers “subscription advantages and elements which make Libé a unique brand and newspaper.”

Readers who create an account with a valid email address receive top articles of the month, newsletters, and subscription offers. Libération learns about their interests through data analytics tools.

“The datawall allows the brand to be discovered by occasional readers interested in our content,” Thebaud says, “to make them loyal readers and, eventually, subscribers.” The datawall has enabled Libé to sign up more than 35,000 readers – an increase of 83 percent.

“Share with a friend” feature entices others to subscribe

Libération readers appreciate the newspaper’s thought-provoking approach to covering issues of the day. “We wanted to transform our subscribers into ‘brand ambassadors’ who share the content with their friends,” Thebaud says. “These friends and colleagues are potential subscribers because they share interests, political views, and sociological perspectives.”

When a reader is excited, inspired, enlighted, even angered by an article – they want to share that information with friends, family, and coworkers. The Libération team developed a “share with a friend” feature enabling subscribers to give premium articles to others who might be interested.

The share feature displays as a button on subscriber articles. When clicked, subscribers get a popup where they enter the recipient’s email address; the recipient then receives an email with access to an unlocked article. Subscribers also see a running count of how many free articles they have left to gift in a month. Libération has, in fact, increased the number of monthly free share articles from 5 to 10 “because users asked us to,” Thebaud says.

They’ve further optimized the function by allowing subscribers to choose whether the recipient gets the full article by email or has access to it on the newspaper website without encountering the paywall. In addition, Libé uses customer relationship management (CRM) and analytics tools to learn what kinds of articles subscribers and readers most want to see.

Since the “share with a friend” feature launched in April 2022, Libération has acquired more than 26,000 new email addresses – an increase of 17 percent.

Going forward, Libération plans to build on these gains, with new projects on the horizon, including the creation of a data lake to support marketing customization, new automations, churn analysis, and customer service improvements, as well as redesign of the tech architecture for subscriptions. “In 2023, 15 percent of our net subscriber growth comes from users that engaged first with one of the two features we launched with the GNI,” Thebaud says. “We’ve learned we can bring new useful features to our users that have a strong impact on our business.”

1000027390 (1)
Sair e perder o progresso?
Se sair desta página, perde todo o progresso da sua aula atual. Quer mesmo continuar e perder o seu progresso?