English Language Media (ELM) is the publisher of The Connexion - an English-language newspaper and website for France. The Connexion provides news, features, interviews and practical information to help readers understand and integrate into life in France. Printed copies are sold through newsagents or via subscription with two subscription models offered (default auto-renewing 1-year or 3-month which the reader can adjust to expire if they so wish). Both subscriptions allow print copies and online access. Individual articles can also be bought via its website.
Journalists from The Connexion follow up news stories often not covered by the international media, both in print and online, and the newspaper also comes with a choice of delivery options with separate pricing for postage to addresses in France, other EU countries and the rest of the world.
In addition, The Connexion publishes a range of annually updated helpguides on practical topics such as the French healthcare system, French Inheritance Law, French Income Tax, currency exchange options and how the French education system works as well as puzzlebooks and an annual calendar about France.
ELM selected Cerillion Skyline to manage all their subscriptions and ad-hoc sales as part of a revamp of its online presence.
“ We have worked regularly to adapt the system to the needs of publishing and the Skyline team has accompanied us in this, reacting quickly to questions and any potential issues. It’s enabled us to develop our subscription offerings and to reduce subscriber fall-out and save administrative time renewing subscriptions. ”
English Language Media was undertaking an overhaul of its online presence, including rebuilding its news portal and incorporating a full subscription management and e-commerce capability.
Key requirements for ELM included:
- API integration of subscription management into new online portal
- Automated renewal process
- Payment gateway integration with Ingenico
- Easy export of transaction data for financial reporting
- Migration of existing customer data
- Tailored invoice design
ResultsFollowing a free trial of Cerillion Skyline, ELM signed up for Standard Edition to support all their subscription management needs.
For the implementation, ELM’s development team worked with Skyline’s comprehensive REST API to integrate their existing subscriber database and e-commerce catalogue into their new online portal, ensuring end-to-end support for new sales orders and the all-important subscription renewal process.
ELM’s new online portal was successfully launched in February 2017, and since then the business has continued to grow and expand its subscription offerings, taking advantage of the new subscription management capabilities provided by Skyline.
Customers were previously offered 3-year subscriptions with manual renewals which were expensive and inefficient to process. Crucially, Skyline has enabled ELM to fully automate the renewal process and now more than 70% of customers are signed up for an auto-renewing service, thus reducing gaps in subscription renewals and saving time chasing and reprocessing orders at the renewal stage, resulting in a 33% reduction in operational costs.
Furthermore, ELM has been able to introduce more flexible subscription terms to address the needs of more customer segments, with many now choosing 1-year subscriptions with auto-renewal, as well as attracting an increasing number of customers with a new 3-monthly auto-renewing subscription. Whilst improving customer choice and satisfaction, these new offerings have also helped ELM to grow its addressable market and increase average revenue per account with shorter subscriptions attracting higher recurring fees.
Another key advantage for ELM’s customers is that they can now buy subscriptions and one-off products in the same sales basket, including products with different TVA/VAT rates, simplifying the buying experience and creating further upsell opportunities.
On the strength of the results of the subscriptions, Skyline is now also starting to be used to help ELM sell and manage their small classified directory advertisements in print and online by sending invoices automatically and tracking payments from their advertisers.