Online Publishers Change Narrative From Audience Growth to Audience Retention to Drive Long-Term Profitability

Sailthru founder Neil Capel to chair industry event focusing on the increasing role of retention for leading online media and digital publishing enterprises

LONDON--()--Sailthru, the leading Customer Retention CloudSM for the world’s top retail and media companies, will join prominent publishers at this year’s Association of Online Publishers (AOP) Customer Retention Forum to debate “Audience Development Strategies: Customer Retention in Age of Disruption.”

In this age of disruption, online publishers must use the right strategies and technologies to build a more valuable and, crucially, more cost-effective audience base to drive audience retention and advertising revenues.

The evolution of consumer behavior and preferences has resulted in publishers continued struggles to increase revenue. According to Pew Research Center’s State of the News Media 2015, 39 of the top 50 comScore digital news sites receive more traffic from mobile devices than desktops, yet mobile visitors spend less time per visit.

Additionally, the report identified that while digital ad revenues across all media grew 18% in 2014, just five companies took in half of all digital ad revenue, leaving traditional outlets with little growth and a major gap in digital monetisation.

The forum, taking place on Tuesday March 15th, 2016, is dedicated to providing insights detailing why online media and digital publishing enterprises must focus on retention to set the foundation for profitable growth. Additionally forum attendees will share success stories, including those of The Economist, Hearst and Business Insider, which are leading the industry with their focus on retention. The event includes presentations and discussions with leading industry experts who have designed, implemented and delivered highly successful retention strategies:

  • Neil Capel, founder and chairman, Sailthru – will examine why changing focus from content-centricity to audience-centricity is key to success, and will lay the groundwork for incorporating retention as a key pillar of corporate strategy;
  • Cathy Ma, director of audience development, Bauer Media - will share how Bauer’s audience development toolkit helped triple users in only 10 months through the smart use of behaviourally informed audience data without the injection of additional marketing spend;
  • David Weeks, strategic sales director, Dennis Publishing – will share insights from Dennis Publishing flagship brand “The Week”;
  • Jeremy Bedford, VP of EMEA, Sailthru – will close and summarise the day chairing a panel comprised of the speakers.

Neil Capel, founder and chairman of Sailthru, comments: “Publishers have made great headway by adapting to the needs and demands of their readers, who increasingly consume their news online and via mobile devices. However, there are still significant opportunities modern media and publishers have to increase profitability, especially when it comes to using data to build loyalty with their readers. Focusing on retention is much more cost-effective than driving fleeting acquisitions that fail to deliver significant long-term return on investment in terms of both advertising revenue and subscription conversion. The AOP is wise to create a forum where publishers can learn more about why retention is critical to prioritise and to share best practices for decreasing subscriber churn while increasing subscription conversion, advertising revenue and content recirculation by offering audiences a modern, cross-channel experience.”

If you would like to meet with Neil Capel or Jeremy Bedford at Sailthru at or during the event, then please contact via

Sailthru is the lead sponsor of the AOP Customer Retention Forum, which will be held at Courthouse Hotel, London W1F 7HL on Tuesday March 15th, between 2 and 5pm. For more information, click here.

About Sailthru
Sailthru is a customer retention platform that helps modern marketers at leading retail and media companies build deeper, longer-lasting relationships with their customers. Sailthru personalizes individual customer experiences across digital communication channels – in email, on a brand’s website and in their mobile applications. Sailthru-powered 1:1 relationships with consumers drive higher revenue and reduce churn for more the world’s most innovative publishers, including The Economist, Business Insider, and Mashable, and the world's fastest growing ecommerce companies, including Rent The Runway, JustFab, and Alex and Ani. Founded in 2008, Sailthru is headquartered in NYC, and backed by an exceptional group of investors, including Benchmark, RRE Ventures, DFJ Gotham, Scale Venture Partners, and AOL Ventures.

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Holly Forrest, +44 (0)20 7183 8200


Holly Forrest, +44 (0)20 7183 8200