GNI Europe Subscriptions Lab findings to be unveiled at virtual town hall November 5

By Dawn McMullan


Dallas, Texas, USA


Key findings from the Google News Initiative’s Europe Subscriptions Lab will be unveiled in a virtual town hall hosted by the International News Media Association (INMA) on Thursday, November 5. 

The town hall is free and open to the public with registration.   

In addition to the livestream session from 14:00 to 16:30 GMT (15:00 to 17:30 CET) November 5, town hall registrants will receive access to the session recording, all presentations, and a new report based on Lab learnings titled “Towards Your North Star: A Report On the Outcomes of the European GNI Subscriptions Lab 2020.” 

These eight European news publishers are in the early stages of their subscription journey to strengthen digital capabilities and grow reader revenue.
These eight European news publishers are in the early stages of their subscription journey to strengthen digital capabilities and grow reader revenue.

To register for the virtual town hall for free, go to

Since March, the Google News Initiative, FT Strategies, and INMA have worked extensively with eight European news publishers in the early stages of their subscription journey to strengthen digital capabilities and grow reader revenue. Key areas of focus include: 

  • Creating loyal paying relationships with readers.
  • Optimising the engagement and subscription funnel.
  • Embracing a reader-first strategy and culture. 

The European Subscriptions Lab participants are Bonnier News Local, Sweden; La Croix, France; Dennik N, Slovakia; Gazeta Wyborcza, Poland; The Independent, United Kingdom; Kurier, Austria; El Mundo, Spain; and RP Online, Germany. 

The “Towards Your North Star” report will highlight challenges and blockers to subscription success at the eight European publishers that participated in the Subscriptions Lab. The report also will look at how to commit your company to create value for readers, build a fast-learning and driven organisation, and how best to empower your company with data. 

What the Town Hall will cover

The Town Hall aims to cut across hundreds of hours of training, discussions, and group exercises to cover: 

  • How did the publishers overcome the inevitable “blockers” to subscription growth?
  • What “North Star” metrics did each publisher settle on and rally around?
  • How did the publishers align business objectives and cultures around their North Stars?
  • To what degree were they able to create a sustainable transformation process?
  • How do the European experiences compare with the Google News Initiatives similar labs in North America and Latin America?

The November town hall will feature representatives of Lab publishers talking about strategic alignment, customer knowledge, and experimentation. INMA CEO Earl Wilkinson will moderate the town hall, with Google News Initiative’s Bénédicte Autret, FT Strategies’ Lou Gautier, and INMA’s Greg Piechota presenting results and findings.

About the Subscriptions Lab

FT Strategies and INMA, in partnership with the Google News Initiative, established the GNI Subscriptions Lab in Europe to engage publishers in a journey designed to help them define an ambitious vision for their digital subscription business and build the engine that will take them to their goal.

The Lab is a nine-month experience that addresses every step of the digital subscriptions process from discovery to conversion to retention. 

Part of the programme involves participants sharing their successes and learnings with the broader news industry. This will be done with the INMA-hosted town hall. 

About the Google News Initiative (GNI)

The Google News Initiative represents one of Googles largest-ever efforts to help journalism thrive in the digital age. Through its partnerships, programs and products, the Google News Initiative works with thousands of organisations worldwide to support quality independent journalism, financial sustainability, and development of new technologies that drive innovation.

Google allocated US$300 million over three years to energise these collaborations, and to lay the foundation for new products and programmes for a diverse set of news publishers, to benefit the entire ecosystem. This includes supporting thought leadership on topics like consumer revenue, advertising, and data that are critical to the future of the news industry. 

About the Financial Times and FT Strategies 

FT Strategies is a boutique consulting firm within the Financial Times. Staffed by the experts who successfully transformed the FT’s business model in the face of disruption, FT Strategies works with organisations looking to innovate using data, helping build sustainable digital businesses. Find out more at

About INMA 

The International News Media Association (INMA) is a global community of market-leading news media companies reinventing how they engage audiences and grow revenue in a multi-platform environment. The INMA community consists of more than 15,000 members at 850+ news media companies in 71 countries. Celebrating its 90th anniversary in 2020, INMA is the news media industry’s leading ideas-sharing network with members connected via conferences, reports, webinars, and an unparalleled archive of best practices.

About Dawn McMullan

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