The Glasgow Herald Times group’s online classified-based business S1 may be one of the most profitable online business in the UK, the Society of Editors conference has hheard.
S1 managing director Mark Smith revealed that the Newsquest-owned business made £6m profit on £10m turnover in its last financial year.
The secret of making money online is, he said, is learning how to segment your audience.
He said: “One single thing is key, getting your market segmentation right. The internet is not a mass audience medium.”
He said that the internet was the ultimate tool for segmenting audiencse into separate markets which are very attractive to advertisers.
S1’s classified-based online portals include motors, property, jobs and recruitment.
Dietmar Schatin from Ifra Newsplex revealed examples of revenue-driving multi-platform editorial initiatives from around the world.
Among these was Turkish broadsheet newspaper Hurriyet which launched a successful competition where readers voted for their favourite car.
This prompted a weekly print supplement, a TV special and an online voting area. By year four this project had generated 28,000 votes and 1.6 million euros of revenue, Schatin said.
Other examples from around the world cited by Schatin showed how a mixture of print supplements, online interactive features and live events can provide lucrative platforms for advertisers.
He said: “Selling banner advertising is not enough any more it’s about creating new stuff for advertisers and readers.
“It’s about selling eyeballs, reach and exposure. There must also be added value for advertisers and readers.”