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WAN-IFRA releases a new report to help understand audiences in a deeper way

Our new report looks into how 10 European newspapers adopted an audience-centric mindset during the Table Stakes Europe programme, allowing them to serve their audiences with targeted content, and helping to transform casual readers into loyal subscribers. Their stories can also be explored in our Knowledge Base, a new resource centre dedicated to digital transformation and audience-focused workflows.

by Teemu Henriksson teemu.henriksson@wan-ifra.org | January 24, 2022

The report, “Understanding your audiences in a deeper way,” is now available free for download in English, French, German and Spanish. The majority of the report’s content is based on the experiences of the 24 companies that participated in the 2020/2021 round of Table Stakes Europe (TSE), a WAN-IFRA programme in partnership with the Google News Initiative Digital Growth Programme.

All of the cases from this report and many more, are featured in the Knowledge Base. A new, online resource with case studies that highlight various topics around digital transformation and audience focused workflows. The Knowledge Base is available in all four languages and is searchable by geography, theme, or news product type. More cases will continue to be added throughout the year.

  • Download the report in your preferred language HERE.
  • Access the Knowledge Base HERE.

Although based on Table Stakes Europe, readers of “Understanding your audiences in a deeper way” do not have to be familiar with the programme to draw valuable lessons from the report.

As newsrooms strive to strengthen their digital businesses, we believe it is becoming increasingly clear that the most successful groups start focusing on the audiences’ needs, and how the newsroom can best serve them through high-quality (digital-first) journalism. 

We believe the methods and practices in which Table Stakes Europe participants identified and worked to reach new audiences are relevant to any publisher interested in accelerating their digital strategies and audience-focused thinking. 

“Publishers entering the Table Stakes Europe programme are at different stages of their digital transformation. The method and its tools are unique in that they can help them wherever they are in their project and whatever the size of their company,” says Valérie Arnould, Table Stakes Europe coach, Deputy Director Digital Revenue Network at WAN-IFRA.

Among those participants is Kölner Stadt-Anzeiger (part of the DuMont Group in Germany), which doubled its number of digital subscribers between autumn 2020 and the end of the programme in October 2021. “During the Table Stakes project, we really broadened our view about our audience,” says Sophie Rohringer, Audience & Analytics Manager for Kölner Stadt-Anzeiger, in the report. This new view on audiences set the foundations for fresh and creative initiatives to better understand and engage with subscribers. 

Another example is the French business newspaper Les Echos, which was able to step up the pace of its editorial innovations during the programme. “The Table Stakes approach provided a structure that clarified governance in the newsroom. Later it set out a framework for moving forward on audiences, around an overall ambition,” François Vidal, Les Echos’s Deputy Editor in Chief, says in the report.

At Spain’s Vocento, Yolanda Veiga, Editor of Vivir, Vocento’s section focused on lifestyle and health, changed the entire workflow in her newsroom to better adapt to the audiences’ needs. Initially sceptical, she now remembers how “seeing that by applying certain changes you can double the number of visits in a matter of months was very satisfactory. But it also proved to me that it is doable. I believe it because I have seen it.”

Discover more examples of audience-driven strategies in the full report, available for free download in your preferred language here.

The Knowledge Base allows users to search different topics or the location of former TSE participants. It is available in English, French, German and Spanish and will be updated regularly with new experiences and cases from participants.

ABOUT TABLE STAKES EUROPE

The Table Stakes Europe programme teaches change management skills to people working in news organisations. Participants in Table Stakes Europe undertake specific — and significant — change management initiatives, including diversifying their revenue streams, embracing new digital platforms and expanding the audiences they serve.

Teemu Henriksson

Research Editor

teemu.henriksson@wan-ifra.org

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