$37K from 15-Month Contest with Hospital

St. Louis Magazine prints 40,000 copies each month. The success of their recent promotions had them looking for opportunities to do even better. After hearing about the success other companies had securing recurring revenue from their advertisers, they wanted to create their own annual campaign. Beyond increasing their revenue, the magazine hoped this campaign would grow their email database and engage their readers all year long.

In the full story, Chad Beck, Director of Digital Sales at St. Louis Magazine shared how his team created created this long-running campaign, successfully pitched it a sponsor, and drove significant revenue, opt-ins, and engagement.

The Idea

Adding recurring revenue campaigns was important to the magazine because they liked the idea of their sales reps focusing on big dollars and annual deals. Kid contests have always been popular with their audience, but they wanted something more unique that would yield a bigger dollar sale and a longer campaign. They landed on a 15-month St. Louis Incredible Kids contest. Each month, readers would nominate the incredible kids in their community. Entrants would share a photo and a brief description about what makes this child a standout in St. Louis.

After they decided on the contest, they needed to lock in the sponsor. The magazine reached out to St. Louis Children’s Hospital. The local children’s care center seemed like a perfect fit. After hearing the details of the contest, the hospital was excited to sign on as the exclusive title sponsor of the annual campaign. The magazine put together a robust package (outlined here) priced at $2,500 a month.

The contest registration form includes email opt-ins for both St. Louis Magazine and their sponsor. In addition, they plan to change out new lead-gen questions for the sponsor each month to collect valuable data. Each month, the winning Incredible Kid is announced in an email featuring health tips from the hospital.

The Big Success

While they’re only a few months in, the contest has already been a big success for St. Louis Magazine. They’ve secured $37,500 in recurring revenue over 15 months. Plus, in just one month, the magazine added over 1,000 opt-ins to their own database and over 450 to the hospital’s email database. On top of all that, the contest has resonated with the magazine’s readers and produces excellent content to share.

Want to read the whole story? Check out Chad’s full post here!


More about Megan: Megan Black is the Content Maven for Niche Media. She also directs the content efforts of the Second Street Lab. When she’s not passionately defending the Oxford comma, Megan passes the time with the latest Netflix marathon.



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