How have you tackled the pandemic – and what was 2020 like for you?
That was a year like no other. Of course it was challenging but we were truly able to measure, like rarely before, how crucial delivering impartial, trusted and fact-based news is.
We have seen unprecedented growth in our audiences, especially on our digital platforms: with so many concerns around the virus and its consequences, people were eager for news from a trusted brand.
For almost three decades, we have built a wide-reaching media with a distinct European perspective and an unwavering editorial line: we strive to empower people to form their own opinion through presenting a diversity of viewpoints and through journalism that is unapologetically impartial. Our viewers trust us and in times where they need accurate information, they come to us.
While our audiences grew, we also saw, in common with other media companies, our commercial revenues take a hit. Many of our clients were – and continue to be – affected by the crisis, in particular those in the travel and tourism sector that forms an important part of the international news advertising market.
From this experience, we believe there is a lot to learn and many opportunities. We witnessed fast-evolving consumer habits and so have started to plan what a post-pandemic world looks like for media, audiences and commercial partners.
Euronews’ commercial department has been advising clients on how to adjust marketing and communications strategy to this landscape. We worked closely to interpret audience needs then create engaging content and new products that align to that consumer shift. This might be through our in-house creative content studio Embrace or our digital teams to target audiences in new ways.
Euronews Travel launched just as world travel stopped. What did that teach you?
We took what some would view as a risk, launching our new travel vertical in 2020. We saw it differently: we wanted to harness our audience growth and create new content that would be forward looking, ie to a post Covid world where the interests of our consumers have taken a new direction.
While health restrictions considerably limited travel in 2020, tourism and travel is truly at a crossroads that also brings new trends, opportunities and ideas for destination and travel trade marketing.
Numerous studies, including our own, have shown that Covid has not reduced audiences' desire for travel: the opposite in fact. But the pandemic and its consequences have prompted consumer habits to shift and allowed new travel and tourism trends to emerge. Euronews published a Trend Report in October 2020 identifying six new trends for the sector in 2021.
Our new vertical Euronews Travel aims to showcase these fresh perspectives, drawing on strong visual storytelling, inspirational and informative content. It takes into account new consumer habits and trends by highlighting destinations and solutions that will drive the future of tourism. Euronews Travel speaks to those who are hungry to discover unique experiences and destinations but not at the cost of the planet and local communities.
We launched in late July and reached over a million page views with over 2.5 million impressions on social media in October. We are working with partners on this new digital destination, especially those whose values and ideas align with our identified trends. There’s going to be further new products and socially-driven content for the culturally curious international traveller in 2021.
So where are you seeing growth and how are you changing with your readers?
All platforms grew this year with the most growth in digital. For the last three decades, we have delivered strong multi-lingual TV output. This has enabled us to be one of the most watched TV news channels in Europe. Every quarter, figures from the key market studies of Global Web Index and Ipsos Affluent, reveal that we are in a pre-eminent position against other networks in attracting upscale audiences from the key European markets.
While we continue to maintain a high-quality TV output, we’re putting a specific emphasis on developing our digital platforms and creating new ones. This year, our digital presence grew substantially, with an increase in 41% unique views on our website alone.
We will continue to develop our digital audience and are in the process of launching a portfolio of new video led thematic verticals: we launched Euronews Living in 2019 (our vertical about eco news and green views), in 2020 we launched Euronews Travel, and in 2021 we are launching new products linked to business, technology and culture, with more to follow.
These are sectors that our audiences are interested in and where Euronews can offer a diverse and uniquely European portfolio of content and experiences. These brands offer a range of new opportunities for our existing or new commercial partners to engage more deeply with the Euronews audience.