OLD Media Moves

FT expanding by building mini brands within global identity

November 8, 2019

Posted by Mariam Ahmed

This year, John Ridding, CEO Financial Times, moved the FT back to its previous Bracken House digs, after it was equipped with the tools of the modern FT, according to reports.

Currently, the Financial Times is in a stable financial position as the business is profitable and its key metrics are moving in the right direction. The prime driver of this success is selling digital subscriptions, which have increased from 517,000 four years ago to 840,000 today.

Ridding emphasized on the fact that how the company’s focus on customer knowledge and needs has allowed the brand to grow. The FT’s customer understanding has driven it to focus investment on serving particular segments of its readership better than its competitors.

FT applies the RFV formula; recency, frequency and volume. They are a measure of a reader’s habit and loyalty with the FT.

“We’ve seen double-digit growth in engaged subscribers for the last three years,” the company says.

“Over the course of 2019, we refined our approach to newsletter strategy,” says Renée Kaplan, the FT’s head of audience engagement. “We have a more focused strategy to deliver and derive the most value possible from our newsletters as editorial products.”

Kaplan sums up the FT’s strategy simply: “Number one, subscriber engagement. Number two, revenue. Much of our business’s monetization is through engagement, and the retention and LTV benefits that accrue to growing RFV and premium content consumption.”

Additionally, the company also made changes to its newsletter portfolio by merging 4 newsletters and creating new ones as well. For example, this year, FT launched the four-day-a-week Trade Secrets, responding to all the volatility in world commerce.

“I think our opportunity there is to be an independent voice, a balanced voice, and a global voice at a time when a lot of media is becoming more domestically focused,” Ridding said. “Certainly, that’s the feedback we’ve had from readers and research.”

The in-depth interview can be read here.

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