DiscoverThe Digiday PodcastWhy Semafor's CRO Rachel Oppenheim is putting clients first while building an entirely ad-based revenue model
Why Semafor's CRO Rachel Oppenheim is putting clients first while building an entirely ad-based revenue model

Why Semafor's CRO Rachel Oppenheim is putting clients first while building an entirely ad-based revenue model

Update: 2022-11-01
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Semafor launched on Oct. 18 with a business model that’s entirely reliant on direct-sold advertising and event sponsorship revenue – a risky business in some eyes during the current economic climate.

But the company’s founding CRO Rachel Oppenheim is confident that her team’s client-centric approach, which prioritizes “innovative” branded content and running ads against “experimental” editorial products, will be the wind in Semafor’s sails, she said on the latest episode of the Digiday Podcast.

Not only that, but focusing on the pockets of advertisers’ budgets that are directed to corporate reputation building will help insulate the company from the ebbs and flows of consumer and product advertising, which for now, is not a priority in the sales team’s selling strategy. Programmatic is also not a part of Semafor’s advertising mix, once again, preferring to build relationships with clients that are hopefully long term, according to Oppenheim.

While having launched with partners like Verizon, Mastercard and Pfizer, Semafor recently came under criticism for having gasoline manufacturer and distributor Chevron as an advertiser on the company’s Climate newsletter in its second week, to which many criticized as tone deaf and irresponsible in the coverage of climate change.

Oppenheim said post-interview in an email to Digiday that “advertisers have no bearing on our editorial coverage and we maintain a strict separation between news and third-party advertisement."

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Why Semafor's CRO Rachel Oppenheim is putting clients first while building an entirely ad-based revenue model

Why Semafor's CRO Rachel Oppenheim is putting clients first while building an entirely ad-based revenue model

Digiday