The Economist: Raising Eyebrows and Subscriptions

This case study shows how The Economist, an international news publication, used a targeted campaign to increase its reader base and sales.

The Economist: Raising Eyebrows and Subscriptions

Principal author: Darren Burnett, Proximity London Ltd
Contributing authors: Nick Baker and Sarah Brown, Proximity London Ltd; lain Noakes, The Economist, Neil Peace, UM London


The Economist's quality content is a given. But you still need crafted, provocative advertising to make people sit up and take notice. This case study demonstrates how the power of content and context can deliver long-term effects for a brand. By re-structuring tea tailored, programmatic platforms to find more than five million previously unseen, retargetable users at a time when they were likely to be receptive to commercial messages. The activity created 64,000 paid subscriptions. Using the projected lifetime value of subscribers, this is estimated to equal a payback of £25 of revenue for every £1 invested.

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