Acceleration Partners’ Publisher Spotlight is an ongoing series where members of our Publisher Development team shine a light on innovative publishers from across the world.
This month, Viviana Viale, Senior Publisher Development Manager at Acceleration Partners, chatted with Vicky Bruce, Director of Ecommerce at Immediate Media, an award-winning UK publishing house who own and operate some of the best-loved brands in the UK. They reach 22 million consumers across over 75 brands each month, commanding 1.1 million paid subscribers on its print and digital properties. Established in 2011, the business is focused on high value special interest markets, ensuring all content created is focused on what readers really care about offering them world-class content – including eCommerce and TV shopping.
With more than 90 licensed editions globally, the universal appeal of our content and brands make them one of the largest licensors of magazine media brands in Europe.
Some of their wholly-owned brands include Radio Times, BBC Good Food, olive, Gardeners’ World, Bike Radar, MadeForMums and HItched.
Hi Vicky, can you tell us a bit more about your role at Immediate Media and what you enjoy the most?
I joined over the summer of 2019 as Director of Ecommerce, and our goal in the Commerce team is to create content which helps people make better purchasing decisions using the expertise from each of our brands. For example, the Good Food team use many different types of kitchen equipment every single day when they’re creating their recipes, so we decide who’s best to review them and make recommendations on the best ones for readers to buy. We have affiliate relationships with the key retailers and manufacturers and earn a revenue share from the sales that we refer, but no one can buy their way into getting their product listed as a top pick. It just has to be the best, and we’re very strict on that! I love it because it’s a lot of number crunching and I’m a giant nerd at heart, but in a world filled with fake reviews and poor quality products, it’s nice to know that we’re really helping people make better buying decisions for themselves and the environment.
Our advertisers are curious – what are your top tips for planning Christmas campaigns?
We try and use our crystal ball (i.e. search trends mixed with a bit of gut instinct from the brand experts!) to work out what topics or products people are looking to buy this year and base our content plans around that. Most of our Christmas reviews were being prepared in September and October, but if new trends come up we can be fairly reactive to it. It’s all led by customers – we try and write about the products they want to learn about.
With the New Year fast approaching, can you tell us what processes you follow to get ready for the year ahead? Are there any work resolutions you’ll be making?
I have three people joining the team in December and January for new roles that we’ve opened up, so as the team gets bigger I think we’re going to have to start being a bit more strict with ourselves on how we’re prioritising our time and communicate with each other. I’m a bit obsessed with Trello. We use it to monitor article production and it refreshes across all of the editorial teams here, but I also use it for my own to do lists (not just at work, I have one filled with DIY jobs that need to be done in my house!). My New Year’s resolution is to put absolutely everything on Trello because I know it won’t get done otherwise!
What do you look for when creating new partnerships with advertisers?
The most important factor is whether or not they sell the sorts of things that our users would want to buy (and of course that they’re good enough for us to recommend!). Generally, we’re interested in higher end brands who make/sell products that are built to last. After that we look for the same things that any other publisher would look for in an affiliate relationship: good ePCs, fair payment / cookie / deduplication rules and reliable tracking. We also use Skimlinks and Monetizer101 for most of our tracking / price comparison technology, so it’s much easier to open conversations with brands who already work with them.
What kind of products and deals resonate well with Immediate Media’s audience?
Immediate has dozens of different magazines on so many different subjects, but they’re all about hobbies and things that readers get really passionate about, whether it’s gardening, cycling, cooking or knitting. Our readers know each sector inside out and they are savvy, environmentally conscious and busy people – they want high quality products that will last a long time, and they want it at the right price.
Where will you be spending Christmas Day this year? Do you have anything exciting planned?
Usually I spend it drinking and eating with my family (and everyone’s respective partners, kids, pets etc.) but this year loads of them are away so instead I’m planning on staying in and binge watching Die Hard 1 – 5 and eating pigs in blankets with my husband and my cat.
Finally, what’s the silliest present you’ve received for Christmas?
My younger sister gave me a roll of Sellotape once. She wrapped it up and everything. I know, she’s the worst.
If you’d like to find out more about how our team can help you drive a better affiliate programme, get in touch today.