Success Story

Personalized emails drive up to 56% improvement in engagement for Last Word Media

Last Word Media wanted to know more about their customers.


Last Word Media is an independent financial media solutions provider based in London, with offices in Singapore and Hong Kong. Since its launch in 2005, Last Word has been the final say for first-to-market news, analysis and comment across the global wealth management market.


  • Improve email engagement
  • Increase website traffic originating from email

The Challenge

Last Word Media wanted to know more about their customers – who they are, what they do and where they are located. They wanted to use this information to:

  • Create personalized email content that would be more relevant and engaging for their readers
  • Better tailor services and product offerings
  • Give their customers a better experience and uphold their position as the leading source of industry information

From a commercial point of view, email engagement is crucial to Last Word’s business to drive traffic and page-views on their websites and to attract and keep advertisers.

The Solution

Firstly, they decided to identify what data was important to them – what they actually needed and would use to personalize their communications. For example, they realized that it was no longer necessary to capture the customer’s full address for digital-only publications, but country was important for their advertisers. They then updated all their online forms, adding rules to ensure the key data was captured in the correct format.

Secondly, they carried out an audit and cleaned up their existing data. Desk research was understaken to populate missing data, aiming for 100% population in key fields.

Next, they put this data to work, testing personalized subject lines and introductions (based on relationship, e.g.‘previous event attendee’ or ‘never attended’). They used a simple ‘copy and tailor’ approach made possible with an easy-to-use email template created by the Adestra Digital Design team. This required buy-in from editorial staff and event marketers across the business who were sending emails, to produce and apply the different content variations that were required.

A new revenue stream was realized by adding targeted banner advertisements to newsletters.

Last Word Media also worked with Adestra to create a preference center that allowed them keep working on their data cleansing process. This gave the recipient control to manage the types of communications they received.


  • Average newsletter click-to-open rate across all brands increased by 25% YOY
  • Average click-to-open rate for events emails across all brands increased by 56% YOY
  • The proportion of web traffic originating from email has grown from 39.8% in 2014 to 57.2% in 2017

Email engagement is highly valuable to the business as it drives website traffic and page-views, creating an engaged audience to attract and keep advertisers and event sponsors.



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