5 tips for digital publishing success from The Times Digital

The Times logo

World renowned, premium British brand, The Times is the no 1 daily title reaching the UK`s Business Elite. The brand is authoritative, credible, responsible, trusted and a part of the nation’s cultural heritage. With a history of more than 200 years, The Times now has more than 1.6 million readers per day, across all platforms.

We asked Alan Hunter, the Head of Digital at The Times and The Sunday Times, about their success recipe and how did they manage to have more than 72.000 digital-only subscribers, out of 400.000 digital subscribers spending on average 40 minutes in the edition.

Here are the top 5 lessons learnt by The Times:

  • Be reader-driven! Everything The Times does in digital is based on what their subscribers are interested in and attracted by. With each publication, they aim to create the feeling of a fortunate stroke of serendipity for each and every reader.
  • You can only ask people to pay for your content if you deliver high quality journalism. The Times, a newspaper with tradition, strongly values the virtue of quality journalism, while they never cease to deliver it.
  • Make every reader feel a special member. The Times does not like the word ‘subscriber’. They rather talk about ‘members’ who belong to an exclusive ‘club’.
  • Bring everyone on board to be disruptive. “The Times Innovation Lab is unique and special in the same time.” Developers, editors and journalists are sitting together everyday, in the newsroom, to bring innovation on the table.
  • Never stop learning and improving your brand. Even after 5 years of mastering the digital newspaper, The Times is continuously looking at various ways of getting better and better.

Read the full interview with Alan Hunter: “We are still learning, and I guess we will keep on learning forever” in Trends in Digital Publishing 2 and get even more insights.