French daily Liberation has 1,000 subscribers to its kid-focused edition
France’s Libération is among the many publishers bolstering subscription revenue, but in this case, it’s looking to kids to meet that need.
Last September, the left-leaning title launched a paywall on Le P’tit Libé, a weekly digital edition and iOS app geared toward children 7 to 12 years old. Each Friday, Le P’tit Libé takes a newsworthy topic like the Winter Olympics or Russian President Vladimir Putin and breaks it down into around six sections, five of which are behind a paywall. Since October 2015, Le P’tit Libé published free content once a month. A subscription costs €55 ($65.76) a year or €5 ($5.96) a month. As you’d expect for a kid-focused edition, Le P’tit Libé is image-heavy, with interactive quizzes and animation.
Since September, Le P’tit Libé has amassed nearly 1,000 subscribers with minimal marketing, a fifth of the way toward its goal of 5,000 subscribers by year-end, said Xavier Grangier, head of digital at Libération. (It needs to reach 3,000 subscribers to pay for the three-person team working on Le P’tit Libé.) So far, no one has unsubscribed, he added.
“We want to explain complicated topics like what’s going on in Israel and Palestine to kids,” said Grangier. “We want new people, new readers, new revenue.”
The focus on subscriptions has meant publishers are targeting younger people to build audiences. For Le P’tit Libé, Libération has been targeting parents who are existing subscribers with display ads on Libération. TV and digital campaigns will follow later this year.
The most popular topics include subjects typically covered in the news, like Harvey Weinstein, the independence of Spain’s Catalan region, as well as bullying at school. This summer, Le P’tit Libé will launch a 84-page print edition, featuring new stories plus updated stories from the past year, meant for kids to take on summer vacation.
Libération sees another potential market in schools. Grangier found that teachers subscribe to use the content as support material in schools. Libération is talking with Ministère de l’Éducation Nationale, France’s education ministry, about making Le P’tit Libé content more accessible in schools.
In the past, publishers like The Sunday Telegraph have tried to grow their readership with children by launching children specific products, others have bolted on a kid-friendly news product to parents’ existing subscriptions. There’s limited appeal for such publications because there’s already a lot of free content available, though, said Nic Newman, editor of the Reuters Institute Digital News Report.
Creating news apps for children has its own hurdles. Each Le P’tit Libé subscription requires two accounts: one that parents can use to pay and a read-only account for kids. This second account is designed so there are no pathways back to Libération. Children’s apps go through a rigorous vetting process before they are validated on Apple’s app store, and it took Le P’tit Libé’s app a month to go live. Apple also gave the Le P’tit Libé iOS app an age rating of over 17 years because it contains content that links out of the app itself. Changing the age rating is a complicated process, and Grangier expects that for now parents are the ones downloading the app.
“Everything is more complicated creating something for children — payment processes, app validation, and obviously, the content needs to be easier to understand,” said Grangier. “It needs to be so separate from the outside world.”
Image courtesy of Libération
‘We see a world where publisher data replaces third-party data’: News U.K. puts its data at the nucleus of post-cookie push for media budgets
News U.K. has overhauled the way it collects, sorts and monetizes its audience data across all its titles via first-party data platform Nucleus.
Here’s why the loss of the third-party cookie is heading toward a collapse in the middle
In the absence of third-party cookies, marketers will need to work more closely with trusted publishers to reach their audiences. Who will lose out? It is posed for a collapse in the middle.
How the pandemic has been a real a buzz kill for office happy hour bonding, culture
As COVID-19 crawls on, more companies are rethinking the wisdom of mixing booze and the stresses of the workplace.
SponsoredHow retailers can be ready for holiday shoppers this year
Suchi Sastri, managing director and partner, Boston Consulting Group As the holiday season approaches and the pandemic continues to evolve, retailers want to know what to expect. Will e-commerce continue to grow at the rate it did last year? How big of a role will in-store shopping play in holiday shopping? While it’s still early, […]
Member ExclusiveMedia Briefing: What to expect from the Digiday Publishing Summit
This week's Media Briefing previews the upcoming Digiday Publishing Summit, which kicks off on Sept. 27 and will feature speakers from media companies including The Washington Post, BDG, Group Nine Media and Essence.
‘Football has lost its soul’: How Copa90 is repositioning itself around the creator economy
Copa90’s overseers believe there’s another shift happening in tandem with the corporatization of the sport that has the potential to be just as transformative