Is it really possible to reward a highly valued target audience, gain read time, and increase revenue all at once — with a print product?

Yes, indeed.

In 2018, Expressen identified three key areas that were vital for the creation of a very special new product: Helg! (which translates to “Weekend!” in English).

Helg! has been a stunning success so far and has grown substantially in just over a year and a half. Through in-depth data analysis, Expressen was able to identify three key insights regarding our newspaper target audience:

  • Consumption peaks during holidays and weekends.
  • The audience is getting older fast.
  • The number of female readers is increasing.

As a result, Expressen decided to reward social seniors and the female audience with a special supplement 30 times a year. Originally, Helg! was included with the daily newspaper on special weekends as 32 extra pages filled with tailor-made content suited to the target group.

The Helg! print product performed so well among older female readers, Expressen increased the frequency from an occasional special weekend to three times every weekend.
The Helg! print product performed so well among older female readers, Expressen increased the frequency from an occasional special weekend to three times every weekend.

Helg! Is all about common people and their everyday problems, extraordinary lives, and feel-good stories. We also feature celebrity stories and lifestyle content that answers relevant questions such as: What wine should you serve with steak for dinner guests on Sunday? How can you improve your sex life after 60? What car is most comfortable and roomy enough for all the grandchildren?

To meet the future, we went back in time as well. Helg! is also about history, nostalgia, and the people and stories the audience read about when they were young. There are still fascinating untold stories surrounding John F. Kennedy, Princess Diana, and the horrors of World War II.

In the spring of 2018, Expressen decided to expand the concept to a weekly basis. Special Helg! pages are now included in the main and sport sections every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday all year round, along with our usual coverage of news, sports, and entertainment.

Judging by reader reactions, we can now safely conclude that that the readers love the new material.

We have in fact gained a 38% uplift in reading time since the start and have increased our share of female readers in a traditionally male market.

Helg! is good business as well and has provided increased revenue for Expressen. On days that include Helg!, we have been able to raise the price of the newspaper from US$2.43 to US$2.76.