Although data analysis is now commonplace for online products, it’s frequently left to external experts for print products. There is a lack of simple, standardised tools to answer important questions such as: How do our readers tick? Where is our strongest readership? Is hyper-localisation worth pursuing?

At Berliner Morgenpost, we decided to build a tool for ourselves. Our interdepartmental analysis tool offers interactive insights that can be shared between the newsroom, sales, and marketing departments.

Since 2011, the Berliner Morgenpost Interactive Team has been transforming data and complicated scenarios into easily understood visualisations. The team’s interactive maps are particularly popular, and we have made internal use of the newsroom’s experience here for the purposes of analysis.

 The Berliner Morgenpost interactive reader map is an inter-departmental analysis tool for the newsroom, sales, and marketing.
The Berliner Morgenpost interactive reader map is an inter-departmental analysis tool for the newsroom, sales, and marketing.

Our interactive reader map provides a visual overview of subscribers and retail sales, and offers concise interactive analyses. This information is so valuable, it recently led us to open a dedicated newsroom in north Berlin to provide hyperlocal coverage.

At its core, the map shows where in Berlin our readers live or purchase the newspaper — and what characterises these neighbourhoods based on socioeconomic data. It gives uncomplicated, playful access to the data and improves our communication.

The newsroom, sales, and marketing departments also can acquire information relevant to their own work, develop ideas, and work together to find new opportunities for the Morgenpost. Simple visualisations establish a common language.

The tool offers three basic views:

  1. A dot distribution map with subscribers and retailers.
  2. A choropleth map with areas colored according to subscribers and retailers.
  3. An additional analysis box that shows correlations between area readership and various socioeconomic factors, such as age, voting behaviour, and income.

The dot distribution map shows subscribers and retailers within the defined area.
The dot distribution map shows subscribers and retailers within the defined area.

The database can be expanded or updated as required, also using open data. For reasons of data protection, reader data is anonymous and can only be accessed through the Berliner Morgenpost intranet.

The Berliner Morgenpost has the strongest local focus of any daily title in the Berlin market — and thanks to the interactive reader map insights, we went hyperlocal in north Berlin in July 2017. The tool not only helped the Berliner Morgenpost decide to establish the satellite team in Reinickendorf, but also supported the launch of a special edition for the area. We now have a three-person team in the district of Reinickendorf, reporting daily on the area in a separate local section.

Promotional materials were directed to the most important locations using the application. The new newsroom in north Berlin also benefits from the reader map. The socio-economic data provides editors useful tips for reporting and, of course, about their readers.