APN ARM (Australian Regional Media) set out to grow its advertising revenues and market share by simplifying its sales process and introducing modular advertising. To do that, we created a series of bundled multi-media advertising options. 

Clients were offered a combination of 18 standard ad sizes, hugely streamlined from the previous range of 260 complicated sizing options.

The bundles were designed to demonstrate simply and clearly to first-time and returning advertisers how newspaper audiences could be best reached across a combination of daily, community, and online products.

Creating these bundles necessitated a new media focus for legacy sales teams. We provided increased training to help sales staff shift their focus from traditional rate and complexity of sale to the easy-to-understand benefits of a modular system. This allowed APN ARM’s sales team to unite across more than 25 business units, 12 daily, and 56 non-daily titles within a single rate structure – no simple task! 

Bundles named for their key benefits allowed advertisers to select the product that most suited their needs and encouraged upsizing. From “Awareness” to “Impact Plus,” bundles were clearly detailed in one-page flyers personalised to each publication. 

Flyers set out key information like readership figures, upgrade options, campaign size, and frequency, making it easy for sales teams to take their customers through the simplified selection process of choosing a campaign. Data analysis determined the most popular ad sizes and orientations available within a client’s budget, helping sales teams upsell.

The shift to multi-media bundling offered a number of benefits to both APN ARM and its customers. Newspaper layout and readability was improved, surplus inventory was used in impression-based online products (MREC), and the leveraging of under-utilised inventory allowed APN ARM to deliver Monday-Wednesday advertisers a readership similar to late week dailies. 

The use of templated page layouts based on commonly used sizing delivered production efficiencies, while improved sales and booking processes allowed sales teams to deliver on their objectives. Advertisers who had not yet ventured online were encouraged to make the leap, and profitable booster options were tailored to advertisers based on their bundle profiles. 

The implementation of a four-week minimum frequency improved customers’ ROI and resulted in increased client retention for APN ARM. 

The bundling strategy proved extremely beneficial. Delighted clients reported increased reach, frequency, and results. They raised how cost effective their campaigns had become.

Meanwhile, APN ARM’s average revenue per bundled customer was 35% higher than that for non-bundled customers, and ad content improved 3.5% across daily tiles and 3% across community titles. Ultimately, a fourth-quarter revenue increase of more than A$0.5 million (7% of targeted pillar) across the APN ARM group confirmed the bundling strategy’s success.