Media Subscriptions Summit

Auditorium, Galleria Level, Hilton Slussen Hotel

JUMP TO: Thursday | Friday

About the Summit

Digital subscriptions represent the hottest subject in news media worldwide, and INMA continues to lead the news industry with Media Subscriptions Summit 2.0. This two-day summit in Stockholm will bring together the best practices internationally centering on three questions: How to start a paywall? How to grow the media subscriptions after early victories? And what innovation is next in reader revenue?

Thursday, March 21


Registration and Welcome Breakfast

Auditorium, Galleria Level, Hilton Slussen Hotel

Pick up your badge (if you haven't already) before the early morning Google Breakfast session outside the Auditorium of the Hilton Slussen Hotel.



Pre-Summit Briefing: Google’s Driving Reader Revenue

Auditorium, Galleria Level, Hilton Slussen Hotel

Join Google for a breakfast conversation on the company’s efforts to drive subscriptions and consumer revenue for the news industry. Also learn more details on the Subscribe With Google and Propensity To Subscribe Initiatives.

Luca Forlin Luca Forlin
Director of Product Partnerships, GoogleLuca Forlin LinkedIn


Theme: Subscription-First Media

Auditorium, Galleria Level, Hilton Slussen Hotel


Welcome to Media Subscriptions Summit

In early 2018, at the first media subscriptions summit in London, we talked about the first victories. Later in the year, at a consumer engagement summit in Miami we talked about how to get control over churn and keep readers engaged. This spring in 2019, we meet in Stockholm to focus on growth: how to break the ceiling?

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

Jess Ross Jess Ross
Chief Product Officer, Fairfax Media Jess Ross LinkedIn

Robert Whitehead Robert Whitehead
Board Member, McPherson Media Group@robertwhitehead Robert Whitehead LinkedIn


A Licence to Grow

How to break through the media subscriptions ceiling after the easy victories are behind? Here’s a clue in the pair of our keynote presentations: by the leading thinker on driving digital growth and by the practitioner from a news brand loved around the world. What about re-setting our companies and organising around the customer? What drives organisational effectiveness? How to turn customer data into insight and then into impact? And by the way, how did The Guardian in the United Kingdom manage to get 1 million readers to pay them without actually having a paywall?

Christopher Bones Christopher Bones
Author, Leading Digital Strategy and Optimising Digital Strategy
Christopher Bones

Richard Furness Richard Furness
Managing Director of Consumer Revenues and Publishing, Guardian News & Media
@reFurnessRichard Furness LinkedIn


The State and the Future of Reader Revenue in News Media Industry

Having converted most of the news brand fans and heavy users, publishers often face a challenge: how to grow reader revenue even further? One way is to sell more products to the existing customer base. Another way is to take paid offering to the mainstream market and start charging light and medium users of your outlets, as well as users of your content on other channels. Based on original research and analysis, INMA will share exclusive insights and advice: what might be the next big thing in reader revenue? How to innovate around customers? How to upgrade subscribers to more expensive tiers? What else can sell them to improve lifetime value? How to segment customers based on their willingness to pay and build new products for the light and medium users? What can we learn from other industries such as hospitality and travel about customer segmentation and channel management? How to strategize about the future role of digital media content aggregators such as Amazon, Apple or Spotify? What can we learn from the history of the cable industry?

Grzegorz (Greg) Piechota Grzegorz (Greg) Piechota
Researcher-In-Residence, INMA@g_piechotaGrzegorz (Greg) Piechota LinkedIn


Networking Break

The break features a book signing by author Christopher Bones. The first 100 people in line will get a free copy of Optimising Digital Strategy from Dr. Bones.


Re-Orienting the Company for Scaling Up Digital Subscriptions

Whatever a strategy, culture will eat it for breakfast, as Peter Drucker famously wrote. Consider news media journeys: from print-focused to primarily digital, from advertising-based to subscription-first, from product-oriented to customer-centric. In this session, we will learn from the news subscriptions leaders how they make it all work together: strategy objectives, talent, skills, culture? Questions we will address: Who should lead the transformation to digital subscriptions — a chief revenue officer, a chief marketing officer, an editor in chief? How to re-organise marketing and business development teams around digital subscriptions? How to get the newsroom onboard? What new skills and talent do we need to grow our business? What partnerships with other companies are key in scaling up?

Andiara Petterle Andiara Petterle
Vice President Product and Operations, Grupo RBS@apetterleAndiara Petterle LinkedIn

Patrick Stolte Patrick Stolte
Director Sales and Consumer Business, Handelsblatt Patrick Stolte LinkedIn



Panorama Restaurant, Hilton Slussen Hotel


Theme: Accelerating Growth After the Easy Wins

Auditorium, Galleria Level, Hilton Slussen Hotel


Best Practices in Accelerating Growth

After decades of chasing any audiences in print and online, news publishers have been reimagining its products and retooling its marketing tactics to attract and retain the paying consumers. In this case-study driven session, publishers from all over the world and all sizes will share their discoveries on what works best. How to mobilise users around your brand and your mission with cause or identity marketing? What are the most effective free and paid acquisition channels? How to best engage users and reduce churn? How to run experiments to improve our products and journeys? How to turn insights derived from data into business decisions? How to automate customer acquisition and retention workflows? How to use price research and testing to maximise value? How to change pricing with existing subscribers? How to personalise experiences?

Fernando Belzunce Fernando Belzunce
Editorial Director Regional Media, Vocento@beltxunFernando Belzunce LinkedIn

Ben Cotton Ben Cotton
Executive Director, Subscription Growth, The New York Times@benjaminrcottonBen Cotton

Marc Isler Marc Isler
Chief Revenue Officer, Digital Paid Media, Tamedia@misler Marc Isler LinkedIn


Networking Break


Creating New Content Products and New Customers

To attract new segments of consumers, some news publishers expand their bundles beyond news, and even develop new content-driven products such as newsletters, podcasts, verticals and apps. At the same time, some publishers enjoy a success with selling group media subscriptions to institutions and corporations, getting a boost to their numbers and revenue. In this session, we will explore the best practices in new content product and new customer development. How to evolve the value proposition to attract new segments of users? How to manage a portfolio of new products and subscription offers? How to sell digital subscriptions to businesses and institutions? How to keep individual readers acquired with group subscriptions?

Shéhérazade Semsar-de Boisséson Shéhérazade Semsar-de Boisséson
CEO, Politico Europe@SherazadeSemsar

James Webb James Webb
Group Product Manager, Financial Times@jameswebbJames Webb LinkedIn


Tech Companies Go After News Reader Revenue

In the race to dominate media consumers’ attention, data and relationships, technology companies have been closely following the shift to consumer revenue models. Reportedly, Amazon, Apple, Spotify and others are working on new subscription bundles that include movies and TV shows, music and podcasts, books and news. Platforms have started to approach publishers about joining. Here we come back to the question of the past decade: to collaborate or to compete? What lessons did publishers draw from the encounters with Facebook and Google?

Yasmin Namini Yasmin Namini
Digital Media Consultant and Advisor LinkedIn

Kjersti Thornéus Kjersti Thornéus
Product Director Consumer Business, Schibsted News Media LinkedIn

Peter Wolodarski Peter Wolodarski
Editor-in-chief, Dagens Nyheter @pwolodarski Peter Wolodarski LinkedIn


Takeaways of the Day

Saving you time and effort, we summarise the biggest lessons of the summit’s first day in a bunch of witty insights put together into a convenient PowerPoint. Take it home, be a hero.


Programme Concludes for the Day


Cocktail Reception by Piano

Digest and distill a day of presentations with a cocktail reception with colleagues from around the world. Drinks are on Piano!


Friday, March 22


Registration and Welcome Breakfast

Auditorium, Galleria Level, Hilton Slussen Hotel

Pick up your badge (if you haven't already) before the early morning Facebook Breakfast session outside of the Auditorium of the Hilton Slussen Hotel.



Pre-Summit Briefing: 10 Strategies For Growing Your Subscriptions Business on Facebook, Instagram, and Messenger

Auditorium, Galleria Level, Hilton Slussen Hotel

Go in-depth across Facebook, Instagram and Messenger to understand which products, features and strategies drive starts and retention. Come prepared with questions for this interactive session.

John Severinson John Severinson
Head of Media Partnerships, Nordics, FacebookJohn Severinson LinkedIn

Conrad Kutsch Conrad Kutsch
Partner Engineer, FacebookConrad Kutsch LinkedIn


Welcome Back to the Summit


Theme: How to Monetise the 97% Who Don’t Subscribe?

Auditorium, Galleria Level, Hilton Slussen Hotel


Digital Wallets: Pay Cash or Pay Attention

For years, the subscription-first news publishers have been focused on converting the most profitable 2%-3% of online visitors, and have been monetising the others with advertising. Economist and tech entrepreneur Jim McKelvey is best known for co-founding Square, a mobile payments company. Now he tries to revolutionise payments for media content with his digital wallet Invisibly that can be topped up with cash or attention spent on watching video ads. Major U.S. media outlets, movie studios, advertisers are on board. Learn why!

Jim McKelvey Jim McKelvey
Director and Co-Founder, Square @2000F Jim McKelvey


New Pricing Models and Experiments

Readers demonstrate different willingness to pay. How to maximise the lifetime value with pricing? Publishers across the world have been experimenting with different pricing points and pricing models to find the sweet spot of each and every reader, and charge them for content. How to increase the price of digital subscription? How many readers are ready to buy access for a limited time — an hour, a day, or just a week? What other pricing models are there — selling by parts, cross-brand bundles, tipping — and what the West can learn from China?

Annie Zhang Jieping Annie Zhang Jieping
Founder, Matters Lab @MattersLab

Cosmin Ene Cosmin Ene
CEO & Founder, LaterPay @cosmoeneCosmin Ene LinkedIn

Tobias H Tobias Henning
General Manager Premium BILDplus & WELTplus@henningtobiasTobias Henning LinkedIn


Networking Break


E-Commerce: What Else Can We Sell to Our Readers?

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 that 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? What content does generates leads and conversions?

Mitchell Mak Mitchell Mak
Head of Product Management, Stuff Ltd. Mitchell Mak

Nick Flood Nick Flood
Managing Director, Digital, Dennis Publishing @nicholasfloodNick Flood LinkedIn


Advertising vs. Subscriptions: How to Balance Conflicted Objectives?

While revenue from digital subscriptions is fast growing, news publishers still make a lot of money with display advertising, sponsorships and branded content. Is there a conflict between these two business models, or perhaps a synergy? In this session, we will break down issues as targeting vs. reach, user experience vs. advertising inventory, and learn about how to make balanced products on top of it. How to balance conflicted objectives -- reach vs. targeted audience? How to build new advertising products with the rich data collected about subscribers? How to manage a portfolio of content with different business models attached?

Katarina Ellemark Katarina Ellemark
Product Manager, MittMedia Katarina Ellemark



Panorama Restaurant, Hilton Slussen Hotel


Theme: The Subscription-First Newsrooms

Auditorium, Galleria Level, Hilton Slussen Hotel


Newsrooms That Engage

After transforming from print-first to digital-first, newsrooms enter a new phase: Readers First. With the shift towards subscriptions, newsrooms stop being cost centers for their companies, and they may become profit centers. How do editors and their teams rise to a challenge? What new skills do they learn? What new tools do they use? What habits of the past do they drop?

Alexandra Beverfjord Alexandra Beverfjord
Chief Editor and CEO, Dagbladet Aller Media @BeverfjordAlexandra Beverfjord

Vadim Makarenko Vadim Makarenko
Product Manager, Data & Tech Journalism, Gazeta Wyborcza @BrendanColloganVadim Makarenko

Brendan Collogan Brendan Collogan
General Manager Customer Marketing, News Corp. @BrendanColloganBrendan Collogan


Networking Break


Peer-to-Peer Brainsnacks: Dashboard-mania

Auditorium, Galleria Level, Hilton Slussen Hotel

You can’t manage what you can’t measure. News publishers all over the world reimagine their key performance indicators and sometimes choose to follow “North Star” metrics. They share data across organisations with unique dashboards for their executives, marketers, and editors. In this first and only exhibition, we will look into the best practices of in-house and vendor analytics tools and allow everybody to play with them.

  • Learn the best practices in data sharing across a news organisation
  • Compare the dashboards displayed in the newsrooms and marketing departments
  • Ask any questions to news analysts and the leading vendors

Silva Bonora Silva Bonora
BI Manager, Dagens Næringsliv @mikefiammetta

Mike Fiammetta Mike Fiammetta
Account Manager, Chartbeat @mikefiammettaMike Fiammetta

Tomás García Morán Tomás García Morán
Digital Strategy Director, La Voz de Galicia @tomasgmoranTomás García Morán

Jarosław Góra Jarosław Góra
Chief Operating Officer, Deep.BI Jarosław Góra

Fredrik Loennecken Fredrik Loennecken
Director Consumer Business, NHST Media Group Fredrik Loennecken

Olga Nemčanin Olga Nemčanin
Head of Customer Success, Content Insights Olga Nemčanin

Vanja Prahić Vanja Prahić
Administrator Social Networks, 24 Sata @vprahicVanja Prahić

Alex Chernikov Alex Chernikov
Business Development Director, IO Technologies Alex Chernikov

Gwen Vargo Gwen Vargo
Director of Reader Revenue, American Press Institute @GwenVargoGwen Vargo

Tor Anders Voldsund Tor Anders Voldsund
Head of Consumer Business, Stavanger Aftenblad Tor Anders Voldsund


Takeaways of the Day and Summit Conclusions

Saving you time and effort, we summarise the biggest lessons of the summit in a bunch of witty insights put together into a convenient PowerPoint. Take it home, be a hero.


Summit Concludes

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