The UK publishing industry generates over £6billion per year, accounting for almost 10% of UK creative industry employment, and supplying two thirds of the UK population with digital and print news. Every week.

That makes it one of the largest publishing industries in the world.

However, owning such a large slice of the publishing pie comes with its own challenges.

The industry is rapidly evolving and digitalising. And the public is consuming more content than ever.

To keep up, the publishing industry needs to embrace technology and keep up with expanding customer demands.

Automation is key to achieving this.

Read on to learn some of the automation use cases from our clients within the publishing industry.

You may just find yourself inspired.

Consolidating data to send personalised, automated campaigns

With readers’ requirements rapidly changing, and competition ever-increasing, publishers need to set a solid data strategy to improve their acquisition.

But for publishers, data is frequently pulled from multiple sources. High street stores, online purchases, apps, third party websites, CRMs, ESPs, and even spreadsheets. All making for a highly fragmented data set.

The result is that publishers struggle to execute even simple personalised, automated campaigns. Leading to stagnation in their marketing activity.


For publishers, consolidating all of their data systems into one centralised hub is essential for a modern and targeted  marketing approach.

By integrating their systems and consolidating their data points, publishers can save considerable time and resource that was previously spent on manual data tasks.

They can save further time and resource by then using this data to send out highly relevant, automated, multi-channel campaigns that will run in the background. With the marketer barely having to lift a finger.

Increasing new reader and subscriber acquisition rates


With readers consuming more content than ever, publishers are facing increased competition. Not only from other publishing industries, but also influencers and independent content creators.

This can make acquiring and converting new readers a challenge.

Publishers need to ensure that their content is the most engaging to new readers. Showing them the right content, at the right moment, on the right channel.


Publishers need to focus on creating a hyper-personalised experience for new readers to grab their attention before competitors do.

But considering all the different content types and channels is overwhelming and virtually impossible if done manually.

Fortunately, once publishers have combined their data sources they can use demographic, behavioural, and purchase data alongside marketing automation to deliver the most appropriate message to encourage conversion

Whether that be relevant offers, tailored welcome campaigns, recommended reading, or basket and browser abandonment.

Use Cases for Personalisation in Publishing

Retaining loyal readers and subscribers


Another challenge that high competition brings is keeping current readers engaged.

Retaining customers is arguably more important than bringing on new ones. After all, it is five to 25 times more expensive to acquire a new subscriber than to keep one.

And just a five% reduction in churn has been estimated to increase profit 15% to 95%.

So it’s clear that customer retention should be a key focus area for any publisher.


Engaging with current readers and subscribers is essential to increasing traffic, site visits, advertising yield, and decreasing churn.

Automation offers significant opportunities when it comes to keeping customers happy.

It enables publishers to trigger relevant communications at every stage of the customer lifecycle. From browsing, to subscribing to a newsletter, to becoming a paid subscriber.

And the options are vast. Offer a friendly and personalised welcome and onboarding process. Keep in touch by offering tailored content, news, updates, and product recommendations. And send timely subscription reminders to keep customers purchasing.

Netflix email marketing example

Winning back lapsed customers 


We’ve established that publishers should strongly focus on retaining customers.

However, we understand that this isn’t always possible.

That being said, lapsed customers are a great source of potential revenue.

Many of the steps to win new customers have already been taken. Meaning familiarity with the brand and service have already been established. And therefore less time, money, and resource needs to be spent.

Publishers simply need to work out how to win these customers back.


Start by finding out why the customer has left by using automated feedback campaigns to gather all-important data. Not only does this offer you invaluable insight, but it helps the customer feel recognised.

Then off the back of this feedback, you can automate relevant responses.

If the customer was hearing from you too much, prompt them to update their communication preferences.

If your subscription model wasn’t value for money, offer them a one-off discount.

Or if they simply weren’t happy with the service, tell them how you’re going to change. What products and plans do you have in the pipeline? 

The Guardian Email Example

Do you work within the publishing industry? 

If you’re a business in this industry and looking to consolidate your data, improve customer retention, and decrease churn rates. We can help.

Get in touch for a no obligation chat with one of our friendly experts.