Digital agency, Clock, is the creative team behind Times+ newsletter’s new look, which has boosted click rates from 28% to 40% making it one of the most successful electronic newsletters for its publisher, NI Group Ltd.
Each week, the Times+ newsletter delivers unique subscriber benefits to The Times and The Sunday Times subscribers. Clock was tasked with transforming the newsletter’s digital template, which was proving too rigid for the in-house team who wanted to be able to vary the layout regularly to better showcase content and stimulate greater user engagement.
Clock’s creative team responded with a crisp new style backed by a digital framework that offered full back end and CMS flexibility while still retaining The Times+ look and feel.
Claire Gribben, Product Manager of Times+, states, “Clock’s redesign has transformed the way we present our content. We now have the flexibility to switch from big hero features to smaller multiple items, add special formats that tie in with calendar events like Christmas, and to link in other sources and sites – as our needs dictate. Clock has helped make our newsletters much more visually appealing. Almost straight away, our open rate increased to 40% and our click-through to a staggering 17%.”
“The experience is now much richer,” Gribben adds. “Content can easily be linked back to editorial from The Times and The Sunday Times. For example, promotions can now be tied in to film, theatre and restaurant reviews – pushing traffic back through to the newspapers and adding value for our readers. There is also more scope for social interaction including Twitter feeds to columnists and readers’ comments, creating valuable dialogue and a community feel.”
Matt Dibben, MD of Clock adds, “For e-newsletters, the secret is building in flexibility without making it too complex. With Times+ we have created a really fluid format that can be adapted to suit the content. This has inspired their creative teams to make the end result much more engaging for the reader – without compromising the brand style. With its dramatic uplift in click rates, Times+ proves that compelling design is crucial in keeping digital audiences switched on and coming back for more.”
Launched in October 2009, it was the first membership scheme and customer retention programme of any UK newspaper. Times+ is complimentary to subscribers to The Times and The Sunday Times. Members enjoy events, offers and extras at the Times+ website www.mytimesplus.co.uk. Times+ deepens the titles’ relationship with its readers, rewards their loyalty and generates new direct revenue streams. Times+ members show high levels of engagement and respond well above industry average to offers and newsletters.
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