Overview of this campaign
As most traditional news papers, Aftenpostens main challenge is to increase our users time spent enough for them to feel its worth to buy or keep a subscription. This challenge is especially present amongst young audiences.
Audio allows us to be present in more user situations during the day: In the shower, while driving a car, or while exercising. It is also the perfect way to create daily habits among our subscribers. So we decided to launch the daily podcast "Explained".
In 15 minutes each day, the podcast gives an analytical view on one news story. The stories is told by our own journalists, and our user promise is to make the listener smarter without wasting their time.
Our goal when we launched Explained in early october 2018, was to reach 10.000 daily listeners by the end of the year. Norway is a small marked, and podcast is still a niche medium. Our experience with building listenership on podcasts is that it takes time, so 10.000 daily listeners was an ambitious goal.
As wa had a small budget, the launch was supported by guerilla style marketing efforts:
- Posting the first episode as a recommended listen in the feeds of our other podcasts.
- Establishing a fixed position high up on our front page where you could find the latest episode every morning
- Using push messages from the Aftenposten app to alert users when we had newsworthy episodes
After a month we spent 50K dollars through external marketing channels such as Facebook, commercials in other podcasts and banners on the tube in Oslo.
We also started doing autoplay teaser videos for the episodes on the Aftenposten front page and Facebook - taking advantage of Facebook algorithms high weighting of video content.
Results for this campaign
We reach our goal of 10 000 daily listeners after just one week. After two months the podcast was Norways largest, beating larger news papers and the national radio broadcaster. By the end of the year we had approximately 30 000 daily listeners, and we are still growing rapidly.
We soon realised that our marketing through our own editorial channels gave us far more listeners than the marketing we bought. Constantly reminding Aftenposten users of the podcast, in addition to the word by mouth effect built our listenership. It was actually striking how a week of bought marketing through external channels did not give any extra lift in listener growth.
When we after two months startet to make 1 minute video teasers for our front page and facebook, we knew we had found a magical formula. The videos almost doubled our listening on the day they were published, and gave our figures a lasting lift. This totally free marketing method has proven to be the most successful for Explained.
The demographic profile of the listeners tells us that we have succeeded in building a new audience for Aftenposten. 70% of our listeners is below 35 years. As a comparison, our average digital subscriber is 40 years old, and the average print subscriber is 60. Aftenposten has also always attracted more male than female readers, but Explains group of listeners is 49% female.
What's best: This audience has definitely created a new habit, and is very loyal. They come back every day, even on days when we don't promote content at all, and the audience grow every time we promote it.