European News Media Conference

JUMP TO: Monday | Tuesday

Overall Theme

Optimising the balance between reader and advertising revenue for news brands. Europe's best case studies for growing news companies' revenue, brand and audience.

Monday, 23 September

08:00 - 09:00

Welcome Coffee


Welcome to the 2019 Media Innovation Week

Gerold Riedmann Gerold Riedmann
President INMA European Board & Managing Director Russmedia, Austria LinkedIn


Welcome to the European News Media Conference

Anita Zielina Anita Zielina
Director of Innovation and Leadership, J-School at CUNY & INMA Conference Moderator, United States LinkedIn

Theme: How German Media Are Transforming For The Future


How Axel Springer Manages Growth

"It's about risks and opportunities. Technology is the basis for our digital business. We need to clearly define where we see opportunities and how our business models can grow through technology. At the same time, we also have to examine the risks that exist and which business models are at risk. It would not be enough to keep up. We have the right to help shape it. Therefore it is important to be very open with innovation and to try it out early. That's challenging, because the pace of technological innovation is so enormous that the next three trends are always on the horizon." says Stephanie Caspar (interview with Axel Springer's employee magazine inside.mag

Stephanie Caspar Stephanie Caspar
President of Technology and Data & Board member for German News Media Business, Axel Springer, Germany LinkedIn


From "Oslo Project" to "User First": What We Learned from our Scandinavian Friends

A bunch of Funke Media Group executives participated in the INMA Media Viking Week in 2017. What followed was an internal project dubbed "The Oslo Project." Two years on, Funke is deep into a digital transformation and the reader revenue revolution (the project is now re-named 'User First' as per INMA's Readers First Initiative). Hear the story of what Funke learned from INMA members in Scandinavia and how they've given those lessons learned a specific German twist and perfecting the art of digital subscriptions.

Ruth Betz Ruth Betz
Leiterin Digitale Transformation, Funke Medien Gruppe, Germany Ruth Beth LinkedIn

Berndt Röttger Berndt Röttger
Deputy Editor-in-Chief, Hamburger Abendblatt, Funke Medien Gruppe, Germany @berndtroettger

10:15 - 10:45

Coffee Break

Theme: Unconventional Publishing Stories From Around Europe

10:45 - 12:00

Five creative case studies that drive revenue, brand or audience.

Timestamping For 'Freemium Articles'

How a simple idea of adding a countdown clock to premium articles changed the whole value proposition of a digital subscription to Plus articles. This idea was first presented to INMA on the 2019 Subscription Study Tour of Scandinavia and received wide recognition by INMA members from across the globe on said Study Tour. Learn about this simple but effective idea in this 10-minute Brainsnack presentation.

Thomas Sundgren Thomas Sundgren
Head of MittMedia/Racher Solutions, Mittmedia, Sweden

Z2X-Festival for New Visionaries

Find out how the Zeit Online festival "Z2X" - at first designed as a one-off – turned into an annual recurring event of 800 to 1,000 participants aged 20-30 and a real "brand value-added" event for the ZEIT brand.

Natalie Wuebbolt Natalie Wuebbolt
Project Lead Z2X-Festival, Die Zeit, Germany

Building Brand Trust by Uniting a Divided Society

How launched the "#100latPolsko (Happy 100th Anniversary Poland!) platform" to celebrate Poland's 100-year anniversary, bringing Poles closer together and uniting the country.

Olga Korolec Olga Korolec, Ringier Axel Springer, Poland Olga Korolec LinkedIn

Interactive Snow

Interactive Snow in Lech/Arlberg is the prime destination for German, Austrian and Swiss media executives when it comes to Innovation and Digital Opportunities in journalism and media.

Russmedia, Austria A Digital Magazine for Politics, Business, Society and Culture

A crowdfunded, ad-free journalism platform with very high journalistic ambition that just managed to renew the majority of their subscribers after year 1., Switzerland [To Be Confirmed]

Theme: Media Executives Turned Newsletter Heroes

12:15 - 12:45

Hear the story of how these 3 media executives launched their, successful, personal newsletters. Creating huge audiences with (almost) "one-man operations".

Fever Pit'ch

Every morning at 6:10 am Pit Gottschalk's newsletter "Fever Pit'ch" is available for free: as a digital morning paper with the editorial on the football theme of the day and links to the best football stories in Germany and internationally. Always pointedly commented and often enriched with podcasts and short videos.

Pit Pit Gottschalk
Publisher Fever Pit'ch, Germany @westermeyerPit Gottschalk LinkedIn

12:45 - 14:00


Theme: The Business Case for Podcasts

14:00 - 15:00

Podcasts: The Business Case for Media Companies

Philipp is the "inventor" of the Online Marketing Rockstars. In addition to OMR, Philipp has been decisive in building up and selling off various online marketing and ad-tech companies together with his partners (in 2011 adyard was sold to Gruner + Jahr, in 2015 metrigo to Zalando). With the OMR Podcast, one of Germany's 50 biggest podcasts, he reaches 20,000 listeners a week. Listen live to the recording of his next podcast episode in this special session in which he discusses the business case for podcasts for news media with his guests.

Philipp Westermeyer Philipp Westermeyer
Co-Founder Online Marketing rockstars (, Germany @westermeyerPhilipp Westermeyer LinkedIn

Theme: Where Does Advertising Revenue Fit in a Reader Revenue World?

15:00 - 15:40

The first line in this conference's overall theme is "Optimising the balance between reader and advertising revenue for news brands." It is no coincidence that we wanted a good chunk of this conference programme to focus on advertising. The heart of Germany's advertising industry beats in Hamburg. More than 1,500 advertising agencies and around 15,000 employees make Hamburg Germany's ad capital. While "reader revenue" takes centre-stage these days at media companies, advertising revenue still has a big role to play to the bottom line.

Data-Driven Advertising

We've seen many news media companies invest heavily in data analytics for content personalisation and selling digital subscriptions. Yet a good investment in your data analytics tools can be put to good use by your advertising team too. Using all first-party, GDPR-compliant data and reader-focused, Mediahuis is able to sell data-driven advertising at a premium.

Jessica Bulthé Jessica Bulthé
Data Analyst Digital Advertising, Mediahuis, Belgium @westermeyer Jessica Bulthé LinkedIn

Schibsted Native Study

Over the past years, Schibsted made several studies on the effects on display: short digital exposures. They also made two mobile studies and a Data & Context study. In 2018 they decided to look at long digital exposures: native text-articles.

Josefine Kvarnström Josefine Kvarnström
Schibsted Brand Studio and Insight, Sweden Josefine Kvarnström LinkedIn

Isabelle Redving Isabelle Redving
Creative Concept Specialist, Schibsted Isabelle Redving

15:40 - 16:10

Coffee and Networking Break

16:10 - 16:40

Follow The Money

The new era of advertising: events, sponsorships & native.

Events That Drive Ad Revenue: "Irish Times Food Month"

The objectives of "Irish Times Food Month," were clearly defined from the outset: grow revenue, build a community, build brand equity, create profitable events, drive social, etc. The campaign exceeded expectations on all fronts (including growing advertising revenue by 12%).

Eimear Moran Eimear Moran
Media Solutions Director, The Irish Times, Ireland @emesmc Eimear Moran LinkedIn

Niche Portals for Niche Market Groups Drive Ad Revenue: Shero/Always - Relevant Content Lead to Massive Impact with Young Women

Brand Always wanted to be more present within the target group "young women." This target group can be difficult to reach as well as engage. Many of them no longer watch linear TV, neither do they read newspapers and even engaging them via social media has proven hard. Partnering with, Always got the opportunity to both reach and involve that specific target group. Shero is a digital niche media aimed at young women between 18 and 25 years of age and is a nice media within Ekstra Bladet (Denmark's largest tabloid news media).

Ekstra Bladet, Denmark

Creative Cross Media Packages Drive Ad Revenue for Local Paper: Apprentice Gondolas

Due to its demographics, it's getting harder and harder to attract young talent to apprenticeship in the Austria region of Vorarlberg. VOL.AT built a "cross media package" for its local advertising clients in a short time frame; consisting of print, target advertising on, video, social media channels, a large event. Within a very short time frame, their crossmedia packages were sold out.

Michael Märk Michael Märk
Head of Regional Sales, Russmedia, Austria @maerk77 Michael Märk LinkedIn

16:40 - 17:00

Panel Discussion on the Future of Advertising

What is the future of advertising revenue in a news media world where "reader revenue" calls the shots. What is the future of advertising for news media brands, if there is one?

Jessica Bulthé Jessica Bulthé
Data Analyst Digital Advertising, Mediahuis, Belgium @westermeyer Jessica Bulthé LinkedIn

Josefine Kvarnström Josefine Kvarnström
Schibsted Brand Studio and Insight, Sweden Josefine Kvarnström LinkedIn

Eimear Moran Eimear Moran
Media Solutions Director, The Irish Times, Ireland @emesmc Eimear Moran LinkedIn

Michael Märk Michael Märk
Head of Regional Sales, Russmedia, Austria @maerk77 Michael Märk LinkedIn

16:00 - 16:40

Coffee and Networking Break

17:00 - 17:40

Theme: Stay Innovative, Stay Relevant

Die Zeit Continuous Innovative Culture

Die Zeit has always been highly innovative, often referred to as the world champion of brand differentiation. This spirit is also inherent in its digital entities — from paid strategy to editorial direction to events with millennials. Christian will present the most significant projects of the last couple of years, and will also take a look at what did not work as planned.

Christian Röpke Christian Röpke
CEO, Zeitonline, Germany @chrisroepke Christian Röpke LinkedIn

The Land of Free Press

Helsingin Sanomat (HS) is worried about recent developments in press freedom globally. Mr. Trump and Putin are both being followed and copied, and when they are hostile towards media this has global consequences. With this campaign, HS wanted to fight back and show their support to colleagues who are being suppressed. They thought their potential and current subscribers would be proud of them, doing what they think is right even though free press is not a pressing issue in Finland. Press freedom is like clean air - the big audience only notices it when it is gone, unless we talk about it.

Helsingin Sanomat, Finland

17:40 - 17:45

Conclusions for Day 1

Anita Zielina Anita Zielina
Director of Innovation and Leadership, J-School at CUNY & INMA Conference Moderator, United States LinkedIn

17:45 - 18:45

Well-Deserved Drinks

Cocktail reception at the end of Day 1. Drinks on Piano Media. Participants enjoy a free night out in the city of Hamburg. Some recommended restaurants by local INMA members.

Tuesday, 24 September

08:50 - 09:00

Welcome back

Anita Zielina Anita Zielina
Director of Innovation and Leadership, J-School at CUNY & INMA Conference Moderator, United States LinkedIn

Theme: E-Commerce or Subscriptions from Outside Media Industry

09:00 - 09:30

Lessons From Outside Our Industry: E-Commerce

Some news publishers, especially former broadsheets and special-interest brands, see subscriptions as a transformative and target business model. Executives at mass-market brands have doubts: "Our content is not as premium as the New York Times. The willingness to pay for breaking news is not that high either…" Is online commerce an alternative that popular publishers can rely upon? There are innovators who are upgrading their subscribers to electricity, broadband, video on-demand, health plans or who are making 40% of revenue from selling cars. How different is monetising audience with commerce from advertising? Where is the money - in affiliate marketing or in retailing in-house? Lessons from an outside player.

09:30 - 10:45

Theme: Onboarding and Staying Onboard - The Art of Subscription Success

Customer Insight for FT Senior Leadership Team

As the FT's business model has evolved over the past five years, so too has our relationship with readers. This is the story of how the FT has created a company-wide culture of thinking about user needs. From inspiration and strategy direction to product prioritisation and user centered design, hear examples of what they have doing to align vision, ideas, and solutions with customer perspective and value.

Monica Todd Monica Todd
Director of Customer Research, FT, UK Monica Todd LinkedIn

How We Made It Easy to Quit But Tempting to Stay

The main objective of the project was to keep customers from churning. It resulted in a new "My subscription" page and a brand new online anti-churn process. "My subscription" was developed to engage, retain and excite customers by visualizing the value proposition of the subscription. This solution has become a destination for all subscribers with information about their product, including administration such as family sharing and stop, pause and change subscription. An essential part of "My subscription" is the new "anti-churn" process.

Schibsted, Sweden

Live Streaming 3,000 Matches to 63 Local Newspapers in 2018

Norway's Amedia has evolved from a traditional local newspaper company to a highly successful digital news subscription operation, with live sports videos as a key ingredient in the customer value proposition. Amedia's pivot to digital subscriptions and content development strategy have created impressive year-on-year growth in subscribers for several years. Local sports is our NHL, our Premier League.

Helge Birkelund Helge Birkelund
Vice President Sport, Amedia, Norway Helge Birkelund LinkedIn

10:45 - 11:15

Coffee and Networking Break

11:15 - 12:00

Theme: Data Analytics in Practise

Real-Time Data Analytics to Solving Business Problems

Markus Barmettler Markus Barmettler
Head of Data, NZZ, Switzerland Markus Barmettler LinkedIn

NWZ Mediengruppe shapes digital future with CRM reboot

When NWZ Mediengruppe replaced its outdated CRM system, it became more central than ever to the company's overall strategy. Here are its four components: structure, emotions, connectivity and people.

Dr. Melina Lohmann Dr. Melina Lohmann
Head of Organisational & Talent Development, NWZ Mediengruppe, Oldenburg, Niedersachsen, Germany Dr. Melina Lohmann LinkedIn

12:00 - 13:30


13:30 - 15:30

Theme: Media Alliances - What Works, What Doesn't?

Where can publishers work together? National logins are well-known across Europe. With various levels of success. What makes them work and not work? And can media alliances work beyond logins editorially? Advertising-wise? And can publishers work more closely together with press agencies?

13:30 - 14:00

Collaboration Between Agencies and Newspaper Publishers

Peter Kropsch Peter Kropsch
CEO DPA, Germany Peter Kropsch LinkedIn

14:00 - 15:00

European Media Alliances and Collaborations that Work

Editorial Collaborations: My Country Talks

Europe Talks, based on Die Zeit's original initiative in Germany "Deutschland spricht" in 2018. This year's edition of "My Country Talks" involves engagement from The Financial Times (United Kingdom), Der Standard (Austria), HuffPost and La Republicca (Italy), Morgenbladet (Norway), Gazeta Wyborcza (Poland), and De Standaard and Knack & Bruzz (Belgium). Europeans across the continent provided feedback on political statements and were then matched with other Europeans who had opposing views.

Media Alliance on Audience Development: National Login IDs

Why the national paper in Norway Dagbladet partnered with Amedia's 76 local papers on a nationwide login for Norwegians.

Panel discussion on media collaboration

15:00 - 15:45

New Print Initiatives: Ideas To Grow Engagement In Print. Making Print Look Hip & Cool

The New Guardian Weekly

Founded in 1919, the Guardian Weekly newspaper provided a roundup of the Guardian's news to readers around the world. The growth of broadcast and later online news changed the focus of the Weekly, but it remained an important, profit-making part of the Guardian. But could it do more? This was the key question posed when The Guardian Weekly relaunched in October 2018. Others included: is it possible to create a dynamic print-news product in 2018? Can you make a new print product that's attractive to younger readers and as a complement to the Guardian's web-first strategy?

Mylene Sylvestre Mylene Sylvestre
Publishing Director, Guardian News & Media, UK Mylene Sylvestre

Norway's Business Daily Automates Layout of Printed Paper

Print Automation lets you design your print pages automatically, with no loss of quality and no use of Adobe InDesign. But can it really be done? Dagens Næringsliv is actively testing this at the moment; with ~50% of the printed paper now on automation.

Espen Moe Espen Moe
Sub editor at Dagens Næringsliv, NHST, NorwaySpeaker LinkedIn

Gone But Not Forgotten. The Search Continues

BestBook is the unique monthly magazine in Croatia and the region, following the modern concept of using all platforms and working with the best and the most important authors. Covering political, science, history themes, writing book reviews, etc., BestBook is the media sponsor of the best literary festivals in Croatia and the region (Festival of World Literature, Zagreb Book Festival...)

Goran Gavranovic Goran Gavranovic
Editor-in-Chief, 24Sata, Croatia Goran Gavranovic LinkedIn

The New Arrivals

The New Arrivals is a series of feature articles EL PAÍS started in order to understand the migration phenomenon, a topic that is at the center of an intense political debate in Europe. The newspaper decided to follow over 500 days a group of soccer players from Alma de África, a team from Andalusia in the south of Spain mostly composed of African undocumented migrants.

The first chapter of the series, the odyssey of the new Europeans, is built around different journalistic formats and techniques in order to reach a wider audience. This special report has been published in the printed version of the newspaper (on the front page) and in the web section in a special format that includes a text, a documentary video, photographic report and interactive illustrations and graphics that explain how the Spanish society and the migration policy changed in the last decades.

Noemí Ramirez Noemí Ramirez
Chief Product and Customer Officer, El Pais, Spain Noemí Ramirez LinkedIn

15:45 - 16:00

Conclusions of the European News Media Conference 2019

Anita Zielina Anita Zielina
Director of Innovation and Leadership, J-School at CUNY & INMA Conference Moderator, United States LinkedIn

Gerold Riedmann Gerold Riedmann
President INMA European Division, Editor-in-Chief Vorarlberger Nachrichten & CEO Russmedia Digital, Austria

16:00 - 16:40

News Media Outlook 2020

Earl J. Wilkinson Earl J. Wilkinson
Executive Director and CEO, INMA @earljwilkinson Earl J. Wilkinson LinkedIn

16:40 - 17:40

Beers at the Empire Riverside Hotel