29/06/2020 - 15:41

Business News sets triple target

29/06/2020 - 15:41

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Business News is launching a more personalised, user-friendly website, has redesigned its daily emails, and strengthened its editorial team with an experienced hire, in a bid to triple subscriptions sales.

Business News sets triple target
The Business News executive team: Mark Pownall (left), Sean Cowan, Danielle Green, Charles Kobelke, Elton Swarts, Paula Connell and Marec Van Wyk. Photo: Gabriel Oliveira

Business News is launching a more personalised, user-friendly website, has redesigned its daily emails, and strengthened its editorial team with an experienced hire, in a bid to triple subscriptions sales.

Tripling subscriptions revenue to $6 million by 2026 may seem like an ambitious target, but Business News chief executive Charles Kobelke is confident he can pull it off.

To create more value for subscribers, Mr Kobelke said the independent business publisher was investing in its editorial team to double the amount of content produced, and making the website, daily emails and data more accessible and easier to use.

“There are so many good stories to write about business in Western Australia that need to be told,” he said.

“Audaciously, and with some trepidation, our goal is to produce content that almost triples our subscription revenue in the next six years.

“We are deeply committed to it and will invest heavily with capital, intellect, and effort to curate the stories that move you and your world.”

Business News has recruited award-winning journalist Sean Cowan as managing editor to lead the editorial growth.

With more than two decades of journalism experience, Mr Cowan has worked for Seven West Media, as a lecturer at Curtin University, and as managing editor WA at Australian Community Media.

He has won several WA Media Awards for his work.

Mr Cowan said the editorial team would be looking to bring its readers more breaking news in the coming months.

“We will be putting a greater focus on breaking news on the website, which will make it even easier for them to stay connected throughout the day, especially when they also subscribe to our emails,” he said.

“Our investment in quality journalism will also ensure that our fortnightly magazine continues to be a must-read, with an added focus on providing depth through substantial long-form reporting.”

Business News editor Mark Beyer will assume the position of senior editor, to focus on producing comprehensive reporting and breaking business stories.

“Sean’s ability to lead our journalists will allow Mark Beyer to produce more of the quality writing and analysis for which he is well known, and Mark will have a wide brief to write both news and in-depth feature articles across our suite of publications,” Mr Kobelke said.

“Mark’s long-form features will be required reading for anyone in business in WA and will be a key component of the magazine in the coming year, along with some new columns from analysts and industry experts who will provide insights that will add value to a product you already know and respect.”

Newly promoted head of corporate accounts Paula Connell is joining Mr Kobelke, Mr Cowan, executive chair Elton Swarts, general manager marketing and events Danielle Green, director of strategy and innovation Mark Pownall, and chief renewals officer Marec Van Wyk on the executive leadership team.

Ms Connell, who joined Business News in 2018, quickly proved her sales ability and was promoted to lead the sales team earlier this year.

Greater insight

To improve user experience and enhance its online presence, Business News is anticipating the launch of a new website later this week and redesigned morning and afternoon emails. 

“Our emails and our extensive website, which houses all our data and our entire archive of stories, has undergone a design overhaul, with the new look rolling out on July 1 with a series of new subscribers-only features,” Mr Kobelke said.

The new website will contain the MyBN feature, which will allow subscribers to personalise their own Business News feed.

“You now can follow companies, people, organisations, projects and industries and be alerted when there is an update on anything you follow,” Mr Kobelke said.

“You can also save articles for later and follow news by sector, creating a newsfeed focused on your interests.”

The BNiQ database, which contains more than two decades worth of articles and data collated by Business News on WA people and companies, has been renamed Data & Insights.

The data platform was originally launched in 2013, when Business News transitioned to a digital model for paid subscribers.

Since implementing the paywall six years ago, the WA publisher has consistently posted double-digit growth in subscriptions year on year.

Business News executive chair Elton Swarts said the organisation would continue to grow its products to be a leader in news.

“I’m excited about what this next chapter holds for Business News and I invite you to be part of it,” he said.

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