“The challenge is to find out what the user really values your product for,” said Donata Hopfen, managing director of Bild Digital. Bild is planning to launch a premium online content offering this year, said Hopfen. It will be a ‘freemium’ offer, and Bild’s unique offering, the sort of news that only Bild can do, will be now be charged for, she specified.
“We were thinking very digital-first before, now we are thinking consumer-first,” said Frédérique Lancien, Digital and New Business Director at Groupe L'Equipe . “You need to think what consumers want before you build your offer,” she recommended.
At L’Équipe, the team looked at what sort of thing its customers already paid for, and tried to work out how to match these with what the paper could offer, combining its strong journalism with its massive archives. One product it came up with was e-books that offered a mass of content on an individual sportsperson, betting on the fact that sports fans want to know everything related to the sports that they love.
Paul Smurl, vice president of NYTimes.com paid products, also stressed the importance of finding out what your readers want. The paper conducted dozens of focus groups, he said, before launching metered paid online content, on topics such as what the pop-up pay prompt should look like.