Case Study

Personalized content helps RIBA achieve a 73% increase in click-through rate


The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) is a global professional membership body driving excellence in architecture. They serve their members and society in order to deliver better buildings and places, stronger communities and a sustainable environment. Being inclusive, ethical, environmentally aware and collaborative underpins all that they do.


  • Streamline communications to RIBA’s audience
  • Deliver personalized content based on individuals’ preferences
  • Maintain consistent branding, design, and tone of voice

The Challenge

Teams across the organization were working in silo, sending email communications to their own lists. There was no visibility of how many emails and what content subscribers were receiving, and no consistency in branding and presentation, resulting in a poor and potentially confusing customer experience. Processes were inefficient, with duplication of effort across teams.

The Solution

RIBA embarked on a project to centralize email communications and regain control of the customer experience. They worked with teams across the organization (for example membership, learning, exhibitions, and RIBApix image library) to audit the emails they were sending and to whom, what content was important and where the data was stored.

After an audience analysis and an audit of the email communications being sent, a strategy was developed to ensure that customers were receiving clear and relevant information in a consistent format. This included developing a preference center to allow people to select their areas of interest at the point of sign-up.

The RIBA eNews template was re-designed to reflect email design best practice and current RIBA branding guidelines and color palette. It is now optimized for mobile viewers and delivers a consistent experience with the website. Additionally, this new modular template solution enables the RIBA team to use conditional (dynamic) content rules so that they can create a single email with differing content blocks that are shown to recipients dependent upon their preferences. For example, regional events and adult or children’s learning workshops.

The preference center and conditional template were built for RIBA by Adestra’s Digital Design team.

RIBA also ran an ‘update your preferences’ campaign, inviting existing subscribers to complete the new preference center.


RIBA have seen some impressive results from the new invigorated RIBA eNew template. The brand style and tone of voice are now consistent for subscribers.

The ‘update your preferences’ campaign resulted in 25% of their existing subscribers completing their preferences.

The open rate for RIBA eNews has increased from 26% to 29%, and the click rate from 3.7% to 6.4%, showing that the personalized content is generating more engagement.

The new template and preference center has helped the organization save time and optimize their data. The team estimates that they have saved approximately 50% of their workload.

In addition, the new preference center has generated a significant number of membership leads for the organization, by asking sign-ups whether they are interested in membership.

What’s next?

RIBA are further testing and optimizing the newsletter by testing different content types and the timing of sends. Their next project is to develop an automated re-engagement program for subscribers who become disengaged with emails.

Download Case Study

View All Resources »