The Globe and Mail's Investor Tools Flash Sale of 2014.
The Globe and Mail's Investor Tools Flash Sale of 2014.

As we began the Investor Tools Flash Sale of 2014, The Globe and Mail had three primary goals: 

  1. Drive new digital subscription sales with the launch of the Globe Unlimited Investor Tools suite.

  2. Increase the perceived value of a globeandmail.com digital subscription by adding new and exclusive subscriber benefits.

  3. Increase engagement and time spent amongst users of globeandmail.com business and investing content as well as our proprietary investor tools.

The Globe and Mail promotes Globe Unlimited, an all-access pass and digital subscription to everything at globeandmail.com, to our reader base through steep discounts several times a year via targeted “flash sales.” 

The goal of these flash sales includes increasing digital subscription sales toward Globe Unlimited as well as offering our existing print newspaper subscribers the opportunity to link their print accounts to their digital one, thereby driving customer retention efforts and building a customer lifetime value blueprint. 

During the March 2014 Globe Unlimited flash sale, we introduced a new suite of powerful Globe Investor Tools:

  • Portfolio.

  • Watchlist.

  • Company pages.

  • Interactive charts.

  • Stock screener.

  • Stock reports+.

  • Real-time stock quotes.

  • Reuters Financial News.

  • Exclusive finance and investor blogs.

Reaching investment-minded readers

By promoting these new investor tools, The Globe and Mail’s primary goal was to acquire our most loyal, engaged, and “most-likely- to-subscribe” reader. These are readers we know consume a lot of business and investing content regularly and who are also avid investors.

A secondary objective of the March 2014 Investor Tools-themed flash sale was to grow our digital subscriber base through a large print activation offer. We offered existing Globe Unlimited digital subscribers the ability to add our Saturday print newspaper — one of our most consumed and sought-after product offerings — as a complimentary benefit of their digital subscription. 

Our decision to proceed with this sale and launch the Investor Tools suite of products was informed by user behaviour research conducted on our own site.

We examined the parts of our Web site that represented the biggest drivers towards subscription success and time spent, and learned that our personal finance and investing content featured both the longest amount of time spent per session. That made these readers the most likely to subscribe.

Furthermore, our site contained a free tool, the Watchlist, allowing users to track the values of their portfolio and receive notifications when we publish stories relevant to their stocks and features which they follow. 

Investing in positive results

The Globe Unlimited March 2014 Investor Tools-themed flash sale produced several positive results:

  • The introduction of new, robust, and powerful investor tools that are used by 30% of our Globe Unlimited digital subscribers each month (on average).

  • An increase in digital subscription sales toward Globe Unlimited by an average of 150% week over week compared to pre-product launch (during the flash sale itself).

  • An increase in the number of subscriptions towards the Saturday print newspaper edition by 10% overall.

The Globe and Mail recognises that our most popular and consumed content continues to be our investing and business categories, and the launch of our proprietary Investor Tools offered a new way for The Globe and Mail readers to interact with the stories, companies, stocks, and features, they follow and track on globeandmail.com. 

In the first 10 days coinciding with the launch of the Investor Tools suite of products, digital subscription sales towards Globe Unlimited increased by more than 150% over the previous week. During the flash sale’s most successful day, net new digital subscription starts towards the Globe Unlimited product increased by nearly 600%. 

Three separate e-mail communication pieces that promoted the Investor Tools-themed March 2014 Globe Unlimited flash sale to our globeandmail.com registrant base resulted in net-new digital subscription starts achieved directly through e-mail communication that were equal to those gained over an average digital subscription week.