The annual growth rate for digital subscriptions to DPG Media’s news outlets has been steady at around 10% for years. By continuously improving our journalism, products and their value to consumers, we’ve managed to maintain a stable overall subscriber base. Over and over again, we ask ourselves the same question: how can we offer those subscribers more great content? A closer look at our initiatives: From Other Media, collections, live sports and audio.

Justin Mol


Leonie Pompert


From other media

At the end of February 2023, DPG Media took a revolutionary step in the Netherlands: it gave its subscribers access to eleven news titles with just
one subscription and one account. If you have an AD subscription (Digital, Saturday + Digital or Complete), for example, you can now also read unlimited articles via the websites and apps of the ADR brands (BNDeStem, Brabants Dagblad, Eindhovens Dagblad, de Gelderlander, PZC, de Stentor and Tubantia), de Volkskrant, Trouw and Het Parool. All you need is a single DPG Media account linked to your subscription.

“Over the past few years, we’ve been working hard to attract more people to our brands,” says Leonie Pompert, head of Marketing Product Management. “There’s been a big increase in the number of visitors, logged-in visitors and digital subscription sales. We’ve now reached a point where we want to offer a richer experience to make those subscriptions more valuable to our subscribers, and ultimately to DPG Media as well.”

Giving subscribers access to other news media was the biggest head-turner in 2023, and the decision to take this giant leap of faith wasn’t made overnight. “Once you do this, there’s no turning back,” says Pompert. “So you have to be sure that it’s going to catch on. That’s why we
ran pilots at several titles to see how visitors would react.”

The feedback was unequivocally positive. “Sometimes subscribers want to read an article on something published by another title, but until recently they would always bump into a paywall. We’ve removed that source of frustration. Usage across the DPG network has increased since we launched the new model, and one in four people who take out a more expensive digital subscription now do so because it also gives them access to those other publications.”

Collections, live sports and audio

Besides the From Other Media project, much more is happening in the area of digital value. Justin Mol, head of Freemium Innovation, gives three examples of key priorities in 2024: collections, live sports and audio.

“Collections allow you to explore a topic in greater depth. They’re like the special editions that newspapers sometimes publish, but in a digital format. Our homepages present a very wide range of articles, which readers have to navigate themselves. The collections, which are created by writers, editors and experts, serve as guides. They bring together all the pieces on a topic and add an extra layer, such as a full-page production where text and images reinforce each other in a digital storytelling format.”

“Live sports will be a cornerstone for Het Laatste Nieuws, AD and the regional titles. We’re focusing on direct coverage of sports, big and small, that have a loyal fan base, such as amateur football, snooker and combat sports. We now know that many readers want access to live national and international sports coverage, which we experimented with in 2023, for example by broadcasting the annual practice match between PSV and FC Eindhoven – the Eindhoven derby. That one football match brought us a thousand new subscribers, so we’re keen to expand in this market. 2024 is already off to a great start with a very nice offering, including football and basketball in the Netherlands and cycling in Flanders.”

“Audio is another area where we can still make significant gains. We want to bundle the reading experience of our news products with a valuable listening experience. We’re going to start by creating a playlist that brings together all our audio content, from exclusive podcast episodes and audio articles created using text-to-speech technology to articles recorded by our own journalists. We’re taking inspiration from our Danish DPG Media colleagues at Weekendavisen, who’ve already been offering their subscribers an intuitive playlist for several years.”