We are really a sales and marketing organization. We put a lot of time and effort into crafting proposals and presentations.

Suzanne Hopkins Regional Sales Manager

The Economist is one of the most widely recognized and well-read current affairs publications.

Challenge

  • The Economist’s sales & marketing team did not have clear insight on what collateral was resonating with the publications audience.

Ensuring clients can make meaningful connections with readers

The Economist maintains a global salesforce of 50 professionals who work closely with a lean marketing team. “Our marketing team is one of our most important partners in the sales process,” says Valerie Williamson, vice president of business development and integrated media solutions for The Economist. “They are the idea generators [who] help us deliver some strong proposals back to our clients.”

“We are really a sales and marketing organization,” explains Suzanne Hopkins, vice president of client strategy for The Economist. “We put a lot of time and effort into crafting proposals and presentations.”

However, having clear insight into whether those well-crafted materials were actually resonating with the publication’s audience, and being able to refine strategies quickly based on audience interest, were challenges for The Economist’s sales and marketing organization — until they started using ClearSlide.

 

Solution

Real-time visibility into how the audience interacts with content

Williamson notes that it is impossible for The Economist’s small marketing team to be on every proposal call or involved in every sales pitch. But she says the “feedback loop” that ClearSlide provides gives the marketing team immediate insight into how clients are engaging with content.

“My big ‘aha’ moment as a ClearSlide user was when I sent out my first proposal,” Williamson says. “I got the email alert that said, ‘This has been opened.’ It’s like wow, that’s amazing. I just sent this five minutes ago and it’s already been opened and [the client is] really focusing on slides 5, 10, and 11. That allowed me to pick up the phone and call the client and say, ‘Is there anything I can help you with as I walk you through this?’”

Hopkins adds that ClearSlide also helps ensure that every professional working in sales or marketing for The Economist has access to the content and strategies that are most effective at engaging customers. “Having some visibility into what [customers] are interested in, or when they’re showing interest so we can follow up, has been a real advantage,” she says.

 

  • ClearSlide provided a feedback loop that gave the marketing team immediate insight in how clients were engaging with content.
  • ClearSlide gave everyone within the team access to content and the strategies that were working for other team members.

Result

More accurate sales forecasts, more sharing of best practices.

David Kaye, chief revenue officer for The Economist, says using ClearSlide to track sales activity is helping him deliver more accurate sales forecasts – even when he’s lacking insight from other sources.

The analytics from ClearSlide are also proving to be a valuable tool for driving improvement in The Economist’s sales team, according to Kaye. For example, if “Rep A” is experiencing much better open rates and engagement statistics with the material he or she is sending out, Kaye says he will encourage Rep A to share best practices with “Rep B” so that person can improve.

ClearSlide is also enhancing the overall effectiveness of the sales and marketing teams by preventing them from wasting time — including clients’ time. “Anything we can do to remove unnecessary work on the salesperson or marketing professional, and create an ease of use for the client, is of great business value and benefit,” says Williamson. “ClearSlide is a great solution and I highly recommend it.”

 

  • ClearSlide helped deliver more accurate sales forecasts for the executive team.
  • Analytics & Insights resulted in better open rates and engagement stats for the sales team.
  • ClearSlide made the team more effective and prevented team members from wasting time.

Company

A leading global publication for the intellectually curious

The Economist, established in 1843, was founded by James Wilson, a hat maker from Scotland, who believed in “free trade, internationalism and minimum interference by government, especially in the affairs of the market.” The publication’s 21st century mission is to provide “authoritative insight and opinion on international news, politics, business, finance, science and technology.”

The Economist is owned by London-based multinational media company, The Economist Newspaper Limited. In addition to publishing quality content for its subscribers around the globe, The Economist has been building content solutions for marketers since 1947. Today, those solutions include content ranging from audio and video to infographics to white papers and articles.

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