Ringier banks on ADvendio for its continued growth
Ringier is the largest internationally operating Swiss media company, producing over 120 publications including printed newspapers, magazines and online media. It also runs printing plants, radio and TV stations, with a staff of approximately 8,000 employees. To adapt its online ad sales to internal quality standards, Ringier uses ADvendio’s flexible cloud solution.
Before choosing ADvendio, the media company had almost no automated online ad management processes and was managing all of its data manually. This led the system to become increasingly susceptible to errors. Thomas Baumann, Head of ERP Technologies at Ringier, describes the issue, “Before we introduced ADvendio, data management was costly and redundant, with data having to be maintained in five different locations in various Excel tables. The resulting errors and enormous time expenditure simply didn’t meet our own demands regarding top service levels.”
Cloud solution results in lighter administrative burden and global access
Once these problems were recognised, Ringier employees checked alternative ad sales systems for their range of functions. While Ringier had in fact been using SAP as an ad sales ERP system since 2009, it proved too cumbersome for their online ad sales processes. ADvendio, however, looked superior, with its individual scalability, notably through the integration of various interfaces and flexible ad server connections. With the decision made, implementation swiftly followed. The first workshops were held in December 2012 and the first ad sales employees were working with the new system as early as the following January. ADvendio was eventually fully implemented in March 2013 after the system had been adapted to Ringier’s individual requirements. “We were very well supported by the ADvendio team throughout the whole implementation process. All of our wishes were fulfilled quickly and easily,” remembers Thomas Baumann.
Ringier was able to implement the international rollout very quickly
As a cloud-adopting company, Ringier holds the ADvendio solution in high regard, which draws on the Salesforce cloud platform. The advantages of this solution include, for example, a lighter administrative burden for the IT team. Once cumbersome updating and adaptation processes are now imported automatically over Salesforce and the cloud without requiring additional internal implementation. This has lessened the burden on employees and also enabled global access to customer data without prior software installations. This access is important to Ringier not least because of its most recent international rollout. Since March 2014, its African subsidiaries in Kenya, Nigeria and Ghana and its Asian subsidiary in Vietnam have also been working with ADvendio. Thanks to the cloud solution, Ringier was able to implement the rollout very quickly. Any number of users can access the multilingual solution without the need for time-consuming software installations. Employees in all countries were therefore able to implement the new technology straight away and can acquire additional licences for the subsidiaries in the future depending on growth.
From a simple ad sales solution to a comprehensive process hub
“The advantages of ADvendio became visible very quickly, which greatly increased its acceptance among our employees,” remembers Thomas Baumann. “First we started with our ‘Blick Online’ product and 15 licences in 2012, following which we developed a proof of concept. Then ADvendio spread like wildfire throughout the entire company. Just one year later, we added the complete online publishing business, so all of our newspapers and magazines, too. We now have 160 licences. In the print business, too, we already use ADvendio to create contact reports. We were actually only looking for a solution for online ad sales and in the end we developed a comprehensive process hub. Everything from sales to order management, marketing activities and annual volume negotiation with our major clients is now managed through the Salesforce and ADvendio interface. The reporting functions have also helped to improve our internal processes. Our sales employees can now extract and prepare country-specific or overall figures at any time using the dashboard in ADvendio.”
Ringier uses ADvendio’s scalability to integrate various interfaces that are adapted to its individual requirements. The SAP compatibility of the ADvendio platform was an important matter for Ringier, as it still uses SAP for its print ad sales. SAP data can thus be transferred to ADvendio over interfaces to generate detailed reports. It works the other way around, too, with ADvendio data being used for invoicing in SAP. Media campaign data also migrates back to SAP over an interface which ensures optimal cross-channel ad booking.
Lighter employee burden and increased efficiency through automation
The seamless operation of various systems through the individual adaptability of ADvendio has had a significant impact on the daily work of the Ringier ad sales team. “We never could have coped with the workload we have today without ADvendio. Previously we had to employ one in-house sales employee for every external sales rep, which did not allow for any growth. Thanks to automated system processes in ADvendio, we can maintain considerably more products today than previously with the same number of employees,” beams Thomas Baumann. “This can also be seen in our 2013 annual report. We now generate almost 26 percent of our revenue from the digital business, which has enabled us to increase turnover compared to the previous year by over seven percent.”
ADvendio has also resulted in a huge reduction in incorrect placements, which lifted the publishing house to second place in the latest Swiss customer satisfaction survey led by d.core Switzerland.
In future, Ringier plans to extend its use of ADvendio even further, with more countries and even acquired companies being added. The further integration of ADvendio in print ad sales is also currently being evaluated. “SAP and ADvendio are worlds apart in terms of system flexibility. While ADvendio was being implemented, our print colleagues were looking over our shoulders and witnessed the increased efficiency that ADvendio entailed. They then wanted to know straight away when they could share in it too,” says Thomas Baumann.