El Financiero: From niche broadcaster to digital news leader
To better serve their digital audience and support their goal of becoming one of Mexico’s top three news outlets, El Financiero migrated from an in-house content management system to Arc XP.
Specialized in delivering finance, economic, and business news in Mexico, El Financiero operates with a mission to not only deliver news as it happens but to give its audience the context they need to understand it.
Challenged by platform limitations and complexity
Despite the strong performance of their brand in the Premium Cable TV segment, limitations with their CMS hampered El Financiero’s ability to deliver on this mission for their digital audience as well as achieve their growth goals. To overcome these obstacles, they moved on from their third-party partner to develop a custom system in-house.
Over the subsequent three years, El Financiero achieved moderate success with their proprietary system — improving both the editorial and developer experience while also doubling site traffic from six million monthly unique visitors to 12 million. Yet, managing their in-house system had become increasingly complex and exceedingly expensive.
“We had a multi-vendor ecosystem. Some things were running on IBM Cloud while others were running on Google Cloud,” said Israel Gomez, Director General for Comtelsat Broadcast Mexico & Latin America, parent company of El Financiero. “We had a partner for backend code development and our team took care of the frontend code. Then we had different plugins and tools to create different content and then post it to our site.”
El Financiero knew that if they wanted to deliver the experience their digital audience desired, as well as achieve the growth they knew they were capable of, they needed a change of strategy. The decision to rethink their content platform and website management came as part of a deeper digital transformation to increase both the quantity and quality of their content and website experience to better serve their readers.
Reducing complexity while improving the user experience
With the 2021 Mexican national elections fast approaching, El Financiero wanted to move quickly.
There were two key criteria that were part of El Financiero’s selection process:
- A platform that provided the flexibility and tools that could take them where they wanted to go.
- A partner that moved at the pace of Google and understood the challenges that came with Mexico’s developing infrastructure.
After evaluating several technologies and providers, El Financiero ultimately selected Arc XP’s DXP. A division of The Washington Post and built on AWS, Arc XP’s pedigree provided El Financiero the expertise and technical support they needed.
When you want to be a giant, you need another giant with you. That’s why we decided to go with Arc XP, The Washington Post, and AWS,” Jonathan Ruiz, Director of Special Projects & Regional Editions, El Financiero. “Our goal is to be in the top three of Mexican media. We know that by working with Arc XP, we’ll be able to get there.”
With some of the most popular and trusted journalists in Mexican media, El Financiero’s editorial team wanted a content management solution that would make content both easier to produce and deliver across the various digital channels they used to engage with their audience.
Flexible page layouts and rich multi-media tools fulfilled this need while also enabling El Financiero to deliver on their mission of providing their audience the news in a logical, engaging fashion with the added context to easily understand it.
To centralize and expand usage of content produced by their broadcast operations, El Financiero migrated their video management, including their library of eleven thousand video assets, from a separate point solution to Arc XP’s Video Center. While longer-form video remains available on their streaming subscriber channel, El Financiero now had a way to efficiently integrate broadcast content into their website, reducing friction for their internal teams to engage with and maintain a separate solution.
To meet the time constraints of the upcoming election, El Financiero used Arc XP’s Themes as the base for their site redesign. With a library of out-of-the-box page templates, Themes significantly reduced the site development timeline while also providing needed customization flexibility. The intuitive user interface of Arc XP’s front-end experience tool, PageBuilder, has given El Financiero’s digital team the ability to easily create new pages and make updates to the site without the need for developer resources.
When it came to the burden of site hosting, management, and maintenance, shifting these responsibilities to Arc XP delivered several benefits to El Financiero. Consolidating to a single-cloud solution via AWS delivered cost savings and reduced site management complexity while also providing the infrastructure stability El Financiero was searching for. Total cost of ownership was further reduced by El Financiero’s ability to eliminate previously needed point solutions along with the external resources needed to maintain the complexity of their digital experience stack.
Achieving an immediate impact
Four months from the date El Financiero and Arc XP kicked the project off, El Financiero launched their newly designed site, meeting their goal of being ready to deliver the news surrounding Mexico’s national elections to their readers.
The business outcome for El Financiero was immediate. In just three months of their new site going live, following two months of record breaking traffic —up 18.2% month-over-month, and 44.2% year-over-year — El Financiero rose to become one of Mexico’s top five most visited media sites across all categories, effectively propelling El Financiero from a niche business and finance outlet into a mainstream news household brand.
“The COVID-19 pandemic forced us to accelerate our digital transformation process. We already had recognition and preference of our readers in print, but we needed to deliver a better product to our digital users,” said Manuel Arroyo, President of El Financiero. “Through Arc XP’s platform, we achieved in one semester the growth that would have taken us two years.”
Within their first year on ArcXP, El Financiero more than doubled their monthly traffic and today averages 26 million unique visitors.
As El Financiero continues their rise to the number three position in Mexican news outlets, they do so with the confidence of having a digital experience platform that provides the foundation with the extensibility to meet their readers’ changing needs and a partner experienced to help them meet their growth ambitions.
“The way we get informed and entertained is shifting daily, and we know that most of our readers are on mobile. That was one of the challenges we needed to navigate with Arc XP,” said Gomez. “Our first goal was to have a very powerful, very strong website with mobile versions. Now that we do, we are moving forward with whatever the future brings us.”