How We’re Keeping Our Audience First: By Innovating our Newsletter Portfolio for our Users

In 2022 Bloomberg Media announced the company’s shift to an Audience-First mentality with every action and decision the teams make, by investing the time to understand our customers across every platform we operate and to focus on building features, products and businesses that super-serve them. The new blog series, “How We’re Keeping Our Audience First” written by the teams implementing this mandate, will help show how Bloomberg Media is better serving our users.

The fifth post of this series explains how Bloomberg Media is innovating its newsletter portfolio. 

By Lucy Keller

Engaging Bloomberg Newsletter Subscribers

At Bloomberg Media, we take pride in offering a diverse array of newsletters, with a current portfolio of 63 covering a wide spectrum of business topics. From daily coverage of the energy and commodities markets to insights into the business of Hollywood and Technology, there’s something for every modern business leader. In 2023 alone, we launched 10 newsletters on varying topics, ensuring we stay ahead of the curve on every industry disruptor. 

We are focused on driving engagement for our paying subscribers, believing the more users interact with Bloomberg’s content, the more they will see value in the reporting. Newsletters have become an essential way we connect with our users. With newsletters, there is no need to rely on the increasingly unpredictable search and social media. Rather, our readers receive content delivered right to their inbox, keeping them informed on business topics that matter most to them. With more than half of our subscribers signed up for at least one newsletter, we know our subscribers rely on this mode of delivery. Because of this, in an effort to deeply engage our paying readers, we are shifting our focus on expanding our subscriber-exclusive content.

Leaning into our Subscriber-Exclusive Newsletter Model

In May 2023 we hypothesized that expanding our subscriber-exclusive newsletter portfolio could be a key growth lever in driving subscriber user engagement and ad revenue. Instead of launching net new newsletters, we made the choice to shift already successful newsletters to our subscriber-exclusive model. 

To select newsletters for the shift, in partnership with the newsroom, we created a framework considering essential and adaptable criteria, such as the presence of ad revenue, unique content and personality-based content.

After the analysis, the following were selected:

  • The Brink: Sent twice a week, this unique newsletter chronicles corporate distress, bankruptcies and financial meltdowns.
  • The Everything Risk: The personality-driven weekly newsletter featuring Ed Harrison unpacks the web of risks for consumers and investors in the shifting markets landscape. 
  • The Weekly Fix: The Bloomberg Market’s team newsletter on income news, charts and analysis, offering exclusive market coverage.

The newsletters officially shifted from the free model to our subscriber-exclusive model in the Fall of 2023, now only allowing paying users to sign-up. In thinking about our audience first, we grandfathered non-paying users in, allowing existing users of the three newsletters to continue to receive the newsletters for free. 

We are measuring success through newsletter sign-ups, aiming to achieve at least 14% of free newsletter sign-ups, relying on previous sign-up rates as benchmarks. Since the shift, sign-up results of the three subs-exclusive newsletters have been positive, with The Brink reaching 90% of sign-ups per day, The Weekly Fix seeing 63% of sign-ups per day and The Everything Risk exceeding our goal with 124% of sign-ups per day.

Since we accompanied the newsletter model shift with a strong marketing campaign, we plan to keep a close eye on sign-up and engagement rates before leaning further in. If the numbers continue to look positive, it’s safe to say we’ll continue to invest in our subscriber-exclusive newsletter model.

Feature Updates: Prioritizing User-Friendly Experiences

In addition to expanding our exclusive portfolio, we are also strategically planning the future of the Bloomberg newsletter program with a key emphasis on enhancing the user sign-up experience. Our primary objective is to thoughtfully consider how we present our portfolio so we can help users identify the newsletters they wish to receive in their inbox. 

Inflight projects aimed at improving user’s sign-up experience include:

  • Redesigned Newsletter Management Page: We’ve revamped our management page to be more user-friendly, with updated image assets, clear copy and accompanying tags to ensure that our users can easily navigate the page. 
  • Newsletters Recommendations: We’re beginning to leverage a recommendation algorithm to power our sign-up locations, hoping to show users newsletters based on reading habits.
  • Newsletter Bundles: Crafted by our newsroom, newsletter bundles allow users to conveniently sign-up for a group of newsletters, making it easier to quickly access a diverse range of content. 

Conclusion: A User-Centric Future

As we continue to evolve and enhance the Bloomberg Newsletter experience, our commitment remains firmly rooted in prioritizing our users. The recent changes and feature updates are all geared towards providing users with an even more personalized, enriching and seamless newsletter experience.