See how Bonnier reinvented their Newsletters

Using Passendo’s Ad Serving Technology, Bonnier Transformed its Newsletter Product Into a Reliable Revenue Stream.

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idenyt and VoresVilla are part of the international Bonnier company Benjamin Media, with a presence across five different markets and 60+ magazine brands

Iterative Testing to Drive Performance

With a simple test, VoresVilla and idenyt built and tested a few native looking ads and quickly realised that the CTR’s were 1-2x greater than traditional display ads.

These placements were not fully integrated into the template, so it was decided that the newsletter should be redesigned to make them more “Native” looking. With that simple change, this further increased the CTR by 2-4x what could be see on Display.

What they also experienced, was that to maintain high CTR’s, they needed to not only provide relevant ads for their target audience, but also a constant rotation of new campaign messages. This would, at a minimum, take 20-40 active campaigns in rotation, and how should they manage to sell that on CPM….?

Now with a CTR averaging 0.35% they realized that they had a pretty reliable click machine, providing exactly what advertisers crave – clicks.

So after extensive calculations, it was concluded that if they sold per click (CPC) to the right price, they could actually reach an eCPM that was competitive with CPM. As long as the CPC was competitive with the average CPM seen across Display (€3-4).

With such an attractive offer, it proved easy for them to sell packages of 5,000 – 20,000 clicks per advertiser – with the advertiser just having to send them the relevant texts and images.

How they did it – Step by Step


Launch Newsletter


a responsive newsletter template, designed around Native Ads. idenyt used a 300×250 format, which fits perfectly for mobile and desktop. (idenyt launched their first newsletter with six native formats – today they run with eight).

selling Native Ads on premium CPC (1-2). Backfilling with premium native Ads from Passendo’s SSP.

the native ads with Passendo’s Native widget to match their newsletter’s aesthetics – ie, with matching, font size, colour and more.

sendout frequencies, number of ad placements and more. whilst observing concurrent CTR’s and unsubscription rates.

new subscribers to the lists on a continual basis to build reach.

How idenyt Built Their Business Case




Monthly sendouts


Open rate


Number of

Native Ads


Average CTR per Native Ad


Av. clicks per month

Making Email into a Reliable Revenue Stream

Iterative testing

has been the bedrock of idenyt’s success, in constantly testing key parameters to measure how the number of ads influences the CTR, sendout frequency, Open Rate, unsubscription and sender score rates – all while also testing the balance between amount of ads and editorial content. idenyt has not measured any negative correlations attributed to the number of ads on either parameters or article clicks.

In the long run

the demand for native ads has grown rapidly within its newsletters. idenyt and VoresVilla have now built an increasingly long-tail and integrated strategy that also covers idenyt’s website. This allows Native ads to be run across both its newsletter and website – with everything controlled through Passendo.

Before Passendo

idenyt and VoresVilla utilised DFP as its Ad Server to run Display and Native Ads. As DFP does not work in email, it means that you will not be able to run complex and aggregated reporting on both email and newsletters. Secondly, idenyt realised that the native builder in DFP was not a good fit in relation to its cross-media native strategy. The time saved on moving all native activity into Passendo saved them the equivalent time of a full time position.

In today’s competitive media landscape, owned media is one of the only channels left that we as publishers can control 100 percent – and email is one of them. This is strategically a major focus area in order to survive. Nothing comes without hard work and we are constantly testing, and still have a long way ahead of us in order to get the maximum value out of our newsletters. Passsendo’s top notch technology, professional approach and interest in making us a success is priceless. We would without hesitation recommend Passendo and the team to any newsletter publishers out there.

Allan Schou
Head of Digital Business Development

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