Aller Media Denmark: From publishing to media house

Aller Media Denmark: From publishing to media house


The world of magazine publishing is going through a major baptism of fire globally. At the same time, publishing houses need to digitize their publications.

Aller Media A/S, one of Denmark’s largest media houses, was forced to make major cost cuts to meet these challenges. Aller’s management however decided to achieve its targets by also finding a smarter way of working.
– We needed to find a way to work with journalism using a reduced number of editorial staff without losing quality of content. The solution was not force staff to work faster – we had tried that several times before – explains Charlotte Riparbelli, CEO and former Publishing Director.
– At the same time, we had a strong ambition to work more in an “omni-channel” way, with digital crossing over to print as well as content stretching across brands, Charlotte continues. But it is not an easy task to change the ways of working in a media house that has been working with print for over 150 years. We have been used to plan content, title by title, number by number.

The editorial departments had tried to cut costs by re-using, re-editing and cross-publishing pre-published material. However, the process was time-consuming and the risk of losing out on journalistic quality by re-publishing content with a title in a different context with a different tone of voice was apparent.
– Kapero has supported Aller Media in Sweden for many years and we have achieved great results – we wanted to make more use of those learnings throughout the rest of the company, says Charlotte Riparbelli. But ways of making business, publishing, and the organizational structure looked different in Denmark. Due to that, we needed to take a different approach here.

The solution turned out to be a structure and organization with a team of fewer editors and an entirely new way of planning and distributing content between channels and brands.
– Charlotte further says, at Aller we have created a working process now based on an agenda where production of content and publishing are planned hand-in-hand without losing focus of the respective brands. This makes it possible to work across brands with an extended planning time frame that can stretch years ahead.
– By co-producing content we can lower cost of content per publishing. At the same time we can guarantee a high quality of content that manytimes even exceeds expectations. In addition, we have created an organization where we have managed to tear down old barriers. For the first time, we are truly working as ONE media house.

The work was initiated with Kapero’s thorough analysis of our business, publishing, channels, journalistic content and our ways of working. Consequently, the editorial management together with Kapero worked out a new organization with clear goals to plan and produce content in co-operation across channels and multiple brands. As the following step, the editorial departments where engaged to build their processes and working procedures together with Kapero. This included the creation of tools to pre-plan production and publishing and to be able to follow-up the editorial content stretching across the entire publishing company.
– It has both been fun and very educational to produce these new ways of working together with Kapero, says Christina Marcher Lundegaard, editor at the Green desk/hub. In the beginning it was hard to think in a new way. And Christina concludes: – We would never have managed to do it on our own!