In the midst of the European financial crisis, one of the casualties is the advertising market.

Buying and selling advertising is very different today than not so long ago, which is why newspapers are seeking new ways to cope with the constant breaks in the market. They must find creative solutions that provide new financial gains while serving advertisers and helping them communicate their brands and products.

In 2011, Diário de Notícias, a leading and historic Portuguese newspaper, began a new editorial and commercial project.

Creating a fresh strategy based on seeking new ideas and solutions for advertisers, Diário de Notícias introduced a simple idea: develop editorial projects with high economic potential.

To do that, the newspaper looks for a strong editorial idea with the capacity to generate new content and attract readers. At the same time, the topic must be appealing to advertisers to attract their advertising investment.

One example of that concept working well was with the “Made In Portugal” campaign. This editorial project aimed to show the Portuguese the very best of their country, showcasing six major sectors of the Portuguese economy and promoting the consumption of Portuguese products.

The targeted industries were:

  • Fashion.

  • Tourism.

  • Historic brands.

  • Food.

  • Innovation.

  • Design.

All of these business sectors are critical to economy growth. The project was presented to several Portuguese companies that agreed to support it. This gave them the opportunity to join a national cause and ensure more and better promotion for their products.

The first sponsors to join were AEP (Portugal Business Association), an association responsible for promoting Portuguese companies inside the country and abroad, and one of the largest national Portuguese banks, Banco Espírito Santo (BES).

The initiative was based on three fundamental pillars:

  1. Editorial content.

  2. Advertising formats.

  3. Conferences and debates on these topics.

Over six months, more than 800 references about to the initiative were published in Diário de Notícias. More than 180 local companies were involved with the promotion of Portuguese products.

Six special 32-page supplements were published and distributed with DN, six debates took place (one on each topic), and a final conference in Lisbon brought together the political and business elite.

Without this initiative, it would probably have been impossible to attract investment from the AEP, because newspapers do not usually produce suitable content for an investment in promotion by this association. At the same time, it would have been impossible to ensure continued investment from by Banco Espirito Santo over six months.

Advertisers gained media exposure that would have been impossible without this kind of initiative. In press, these brands managed more than 1.4 million contacts (17.1% of the universe) and in television more than 1.5 million contacts (15% of the universe), figures impossible to achieve with regular by the normal investment.