Zephr is elevating $ eight million to assist information publishers develop their subscription earnings

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Zephr has raised $ 8 million in a new round of funding led by Bertelsmann Digital Media Investments (owned by media giant Bertelsmann).

The London-based startup's customers already include publishers such as McClatchy, News Corp Australia, Dennis Publishing and PEI Media. CEO James Henderson emailed me that Zephr is "not creating a monolithic product that tries to do a little bit of everything" but rather "focuses solely on the experience and path for the prospect or customer" of what to An average conversion increase of 150% results in rates and a 25% increase in subscription income within the first six months.

Henderson added, "By delivering the right product, package, or message to the right person at the right time, Zephr improves conversion rates, dramatically reduces churn and generates new, stable revenue."

To do this, Zephr relies largely on the editor's initial data on its readers. Henderson said this data is "by far the most important and powerful type of data that Zephr both uses and generates". However, it also uses context-related data such as "time of day, location, device or consumption pattern".

He also noted that Zephr is a no-code tool that allows non-technical members of the marketing, sales, and product teams to use a drag-and-drop editor to create various customer journeys.

Credit: Zephr

When asked how the pandemic has affected the startup's business, Henderson said there are "both positive and negative indicators," with newsrooms seeing record readings but in some cases spending freezing.

"As companies prepare for a post-pandemic world, we see our markets seize the opportunity of all these new potential subscribers and invest in subscription models – and in Zephr." he said. "In the publishing and news media, the old model of dominant ad revenue is on the way out, and we are well positioned to capitalize on that interest."

The new funding also includes funding from the UK branch of Silicon Valley Bank, bringing Zephr's total funding to $ 11 million. Previous investors include Knight Capital and Nauta Capital.

According to the company's funding announcement, this money will be used for further product development (with an emphasis on greater personalization) as well as for expansion in the US, Europe and Asia.

"The recent weakness in the advertising market has put pressure on media companies to diversify revenue streams and introduce or optimize subscription models," said BDMI Managing director Urs Cete in a statement. "We recognize Zephr's excellent technology that enables publishers to take advantage of online subscription and create customer journeys that are truly unique."