The 6 Key Principles When Building Branded Content Revenues

Nov 27, 2018

How do you build branded content revenues? How do you price yourself accordingly? And what will it help you as a content studio to do things more simple - and doing those simple things brilliantly?

In this episode, we welcome Joanna Carrigan, Head of Branded Content at News UK, who reveals her 6 key principles when building branded content revenues. 

Duration: 55.40

About today’s guest

Joanna Carrigan is Head of Branded Content at News UK, covering their full digital portfolio of heritage brands - The Times, The Sunday Times and The Sun.

Formerly Commercial Editor at The Huffington Post, Joanna’s role provides a link between commercial and editorial in order to develop and grow digital branded content strategy and develop product and revenue.

A First Woman (media category) finalist, and recently named on the NAI 100 significant women in native advertising, Joanna draws on extensive content experience gained from a background in journalism, agency planning, and commercial environments.

Show notes



Resources mentioned

100 Significant Women in Native Advertising (ebook)


Joanna Carrigan’s background and her job as Head of Branded Content at News UK.


How News UK simplified their branded content efforts - internally and for the market.

“We simplified our article structure and also pricing” - Joanna Carrigan


Building branded content revenue: How News UK has built their different streams of revenue - and how they underpriced themselves in the beginning.

“We realised that we had to diversify and going down a more performance-led route was key and we actually had to speak to a number of different client KPIs which obviously speak to different platforms” - Joanna Carrigan

“This might be a strange advice, but we actually put our prices up because we realised we’d been underselling ourselves (...) we lost campaign because of that, but actually it’s paid off over an extended period of time and you’ve got to look at that as a long-term strategy” - Joanna Carrigan



Key Principle 1: Do the simple things brilliantly

“Don’t try to be all things to all men. Pack things that you’re good at and do them very well” - Joanna Carrigan


Key Principle 2: Build really useful environments for campaigns

Resources mentioned

Social Amp:


Key Principle 3: Price yourself accordingly

“For me, it becomes about placing the value on the things that you have worked very hard to build” - Joanna Carrigan


Key Principle 4: Empower your team - and using native advertising for more than just top-funnel content.

“Anybody is capable of having a good idea (...) we bring all sorts of people into brainstorms and it’s just about listening to people and really trusting their instincts and trusting yours” - Joanna Carrigan


Key Principle 5: Data is king

“We have a huge amount of first-party data about our audience, which we are able to use in a number of ways. To inform our content and then also how we distribute it” - Joanna Carrigan.


Key Principle 6: Admit when you’re wrong, rip it up and start again

“You have to be able to admit to your self when you’ve not done something right and then actually work out how do you do it right” - Joanna Carrigan


News UK and their native advertising revenue - and Joanna Carrigan’s advice to other publishers.

“In these days of adblockers and various other challenges to display advertising, it’s increasingly of interest to advertisers and agencies in terms of being able to tell their brand story” - Joanna Carrigan


Building a team from scratch - what would the first five hires be?


What to expect from News UK the next couple of months.

All resources mentioned

100 Significant Women in Native Advertising (ebook)

Social Amp:

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Editor at Native Advertising Institute |

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