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Becoming The Economist

Becoming the Economist
"A severe contest between intelligence, which presses forward, and an unworthy timid ignorance obstructing our progress."

Why The Economist?

The Economist has been a weekly newspaper covering current affairs, politics, international business, and technology in a comprehensive and data-driven fashion since its inception in 1843. Since then, the publisher has been growing at a tremendous pace and has made its presence in 14 countries.

The publisher attracts nearly 13 million monthly visitors to the website and generated an operating profit of £41.8 million in 2020 (Src). Over the years, The Economist has developed a distinct focus on digitally-driven propositions, launching various products to develop revenue growth.

Without further ado, let’s look at the journey of The Economist and break down their interesting strategies behind this growth.

Discretion: In this case study, we would also be focusing on the data for the parent company of The Economist, aka The Economist Group.

How it all started?

1996

A well-known magazine, The Economist had built a large and loyal following by 1996. Now, it was time to expand the possibilities of the brand, and create new opportunities to help the organization grow. Taking a step forward, the publisher launched its web version in the same year.

At first, the website promoted the print edition of The Economist alongside other websites such as Roll Call and The Journal of Commerce. Slowly, it made available all of the academic papers and research on economics, demographics, technology and telecommunications, politics, and social issues. The book reviews and several surveys were also a particular draw of the website, as The Economist’s literary critics proved to be trustworthy and thoughtful.

The Economist in 2000's

Where are they today?

As per The Economist’s annual report, the operating profits for the Group have increased to £41.8 Million, on total revenue of £310.3 Million in 2021, up by 27% from the previous year. The publisher has also recorded the largest ever growth in subscriber numbers as it grew by 90,000 in 2021 to reach over 1 Million subscribers.

The Economist in 2021

In terms of social media growth, the publisher has more than 26 million followers on Twitter, and 10 million on Facebook. As of now, The Economist attracts 12.5 million monthly visitors to its website. The main traffic sources for the publisher have always been direct and search. Here’s a breakdown of their latest traffic referrals:

Economist Traffic Sources

Automatad Team

At Automatad, we help publishers to monetize better without hampering the user experience. Our products are live across hundreds of publishers, earning them incremental ad revenue with every passing second. You can request a free audit to get an estimated revenue uplift today.

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