How Raconteur made its mark on the publishing landscape

200k

monthly unique readers

33k

newsletter subscribers

60%

of traffic from organic sources

Services provided

  • Strategy

  • Creation

  • Distribution

Raconteur had built its house on borrowed ground.

Having published hundreds of special reports in The Times and The Sunday Times, we enjoyed a stellar reputation among the title’s vast and influential audience . But, our success came with a catch.

We will always have the deepest of respect for The Times. After all, it helped us establish our brand as a leading publisher for senior business leaders. But, our fate couldn’t remain tied to the newspaper’s success forever.

We needed our own audience to safeguard our publishing operation’s future – and for that, we needed to build our own publishing brand.

The challenge

Launching an online publication to rival established titles like The Economist or WIRED is no mean feat. To succeed, we needed to galvanise our in-house team of subject-matter experts, journalists, designers, marketers and developers around a single unified strategy.

“Over the course of eight years, we had amassed a vast content archive that our existing site simply couldn’t handle,” explains Raconteur MD Will Brookes. “To better serve our audience, we needed to develop a deeper understanding of their content needs and deliver a streamlined user experience.”

Achieving these goals would mean creating a cutting-edge digital ecosystem. Along the way, we would need to review, update and optimise thousands of content pieces to ensure we were providing current insights that were still relevant to our target audience.

Our solution

To grow our online presence and attract a new audience of business decision-makers, we built Raconteur.net – a digital content hub custom-made to host our industry-leading reports, videos, infographics and articles. At the same time, we conducted a full content audit to refocus our editorial identity around engaging senior business leaders.

“Every single article on our site is now digitally optimised and includes relevant links and SEO keywords,” says Mr Brookes. “Our documented editorial guidelines ensure everything we publish aligns with our core identity.”

Today, we work with commercial partners to identify interesting topics and themes that will resonate with their audiences.
Then, our in-house experts combine their own insights with search and social listening data to identify fertile editorial ideas and arm our writers with the information they need to create content that cuts through.

Our publishing calendar perfectly complements our content’s print syndication as special reports in The Times and The Sunday Times. We then amplify our content using email newsletters, social media and paid digital promotion.

Results

Raconteur.net has grown rapidly and cemented its reputation as a leading publishing brand for business leaders.

Within two years, the site already boasted 200,000 monthly unique users. Our 263,000 monthly pageviews are a testament to the quality of our content, with many readers consuming several articles in a single visit. Because our content regularly ranks on the first page of Google, at least 60 per cent of our traffic comes from organic searches.

Business leaders including Antonio Grasso , Mike Quindazzi and Michael Fisher regularly share our content on social media, and many of our articles have been viewed hundreds of thousands of times.

Our weekly newsletter reaches 33,000 people each week, with our daily email bulletins generating an average open rate of 50 per cent and an average click-through rate of 30 per cent.

“Raconteur.net has also transformed the services we provide for clients,” says Mr Brookes. “It’s helped us generate thousands of qualified leads, getting ideal prospects from the likes of NASA, Bloomberg, Standard Chartered and more to download their content.”

He adds: “The insights we are uncovering about our audience will empower us to engage company decision-makers even more effectively as we continue to grow our readership.”

Our digital hub was integral in transforming our business. We’ve taken control of our own destiny and will use these foundations to engage an ever-expanding sphere of business leaders in the coming months and years.

Will Brookes Managing director
Raconteur