Keskisuomalainen Oyj: Improving Retention with Personalised & Automated JAMES Newsletters 

Founded in 1870, Keskisuomalainen Oyj is a Finnish media group and is currently the largest publisher in central Finland with over 60 regional and local newspapers.

Current Chief Digital Officer at Keskisuomalainen Oyj, Kirsi Hakaniemi will be speaking at the upcoming Digital Growth Summit, along with a lineup of renowned industry speakers sharing cases and insights.

Limited seats are still available.

What bottlenecks were they experiencing?

  1. Keskisuomalainen Oyj identified their newsletters were underutilised within their user funnel; 
  2. They also experienced a high subscriber churn in their digital subscriptions. 

The objective is to look for a way to better reach and engage their subscribers with newsletters.

Thus, Keskisuomalainen Oyj initiated a partnership with Twipe to investigate the impact of personalised and automated newsletters on reader engagement and retention.

This was done using Twipe’s JAMES technology, which employs machine learning and content recommendation algorithms to create personalised triggers for distribution through email and other channels.

But before proceeding into the details of this project, first we will answer: 

What is JAMES?

It is a technology developed by Twipe that offers interest based, one-to-one personalisation to engage readers. 

  • Automatically surface the right content to the right readers with personalised reading lists
  • Activate readers for increased conversion rates
  • Develop habitual reading

The project

The main objectives to be tackled were:  

  • Proving the value of automated and personalised newsletters at a hyper-local level
  • Engaging readers at a hyper-local level to increase habitual reading and retention
  • Tailoring JAMES algorithms to blend local and national news, with a focus on delivering more local news to subscribers
  • Conversion of new on-boarders to long-term subscribers:
    • Readers join with a trial subscription for a 3-month period, at the end of this period they can choose to cancel or continue at a regular price 
    • Half of new subscribers are exposed to JAMES emails, the other half act as a control group
  • Implement easily scalable technology in smaller newsrooms:  
    • Smaller newsrooms can be only be 2-3 people, so automation plays a key role in saving time

The results

  • JAMES emails outperformed Keskisuomalainen’s editorially produced newsletters:  
    • On average, we have observed 5% increase in open rate and 4.5% increase in click rate from readers receiving JAMES mails compared to readers receiving an editorially produced email. 
  • Overall higher activation and evolution of habitual reading on exposed cohorts when compared to control groups, across all regions.  
    • 4,700 more readers turned habitual
    • 6,500 more readers activated

Activated = Evolved from no interaction in past 30 days to at least 1 day with interaction

Habitual = Read 10 or more days in past 30 days 

  • 40-50% of on-boarders were converted after their 3-month trial, with some regions seeing more than 50% of onboarded readers turning habitual 
  • Keskisuomalainen’s survival analysis of on-boarders shows reduced churn on readers exposed to JAMES mails, with continuing positive results predicted for the future.
  • Automation of emails proved as an added value from a time-management point of view of smaller newsrooms.
  • 🎉 Keskisuomalainen won the ‘Best initiative to retain subscribers’ at this year’s INMA Global Media Awards in New York.    

All and especially our smaller newsrooms have benefited greatly from automated newsletters, as our reporters can now concentrate on their core work. Thanks to the personalisation algorithm, we can be confident every day that our subscribers receive information about stories that are highly relevant to them.

Juho Hämäläinen, Digital Content Development Manager

Join us at the Twipe Digital Growth Summit

To know more about how personalisation and automation can help with your reader retention, increase open rate and click rate, join us at the Twipe Digital Growth Summit on September 26th in Brussels, Belgium.

Chief Digital Officer at Keskisuomalainen Oyj, Kirsi Hakaniemi will be attending as one of the speakers, along with a lineup of renowned industry speakers sharing cases and insights.

It will be an exclusive day of learning, inspiration and connecting with industry colleagues. Reserve your spot today while tickets are still available!


Daniel Tee

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