New Publishing Tech
4 mins read

Q&A: Workbooks, cloud-based CRM and marketing automation platform

desk with keyboard

Founded in 2007, Workbooks is headquartered in the UK and delivers cloud-based CRM and business applications to growing and mid-market organisations, including publishers. Its technology platform can be found across 30 different countries globally and is available in five languages. WNIP caught up with John Cheney, Workbooks’ CEO, to find out more about how their solution helps publishers…

What business problem is your company addressing?

Customers, advertisers, subscribers and prospects data is often held in many different systems across publishing businesses, resulting in inefficient processes.

This problem usually arises from organic growth where multiple siloed systems and spreadsheets have been put in place to solve point problems without consideration of the bigger picture.

By implementing Workbooks, which is a cloud-based CRM and Marketing Automation platform with order processing and event management, all contact data is centralised – enabling publishers to drive better relationships, thereby accelerating their business growth.

Workbooks is a platform that can help publishers manage many facets of their business in one place.

What is your core solution addressing this problem?

Publishers make money through the monetisation of their audiences. That monetisation typically happens through:

  • Advertising (either print or digital)
  • Subscriptions
  • Events

Workbooks CRM provides a single platform where publishers can manage both their audience and the full lead-to-cash cycle for all of their revenue streams – and enables real-time reporting and decision making.

With a single 360-degree view of their audience, publishers can develop a true data-driven strategy for their business – for both their subscribers and their advertisers. They can easily monetise their products and services and expand their revenue stream.

The streamlining of processes that occurs by managing everything in the same system is an added bonus, making the organisation more efficient and helping direct resources towards identifying new and innovative ways of engaging and monetising their audience.

Can you give examples of publishers using Workbooks?

Infopro Digital wanted to better understand the scale of their pipeline, better visualise their sales opportunities but also see how they were performing against targets. Furthermore the company has a range of different services on offer, but found there was considerable overlap between sales staff servicing the same clients. This led to a duplication of work, contradictory offers and siloed contact lists.

Workbooks’ CRM now pulls all of Infopro’s sales contacts into a single database for easy access across the business. Infopro Digital sales staff now have a clear visualisation of their pipeline, with easy access to their most promising leads. All staff can see previous contact with each client so there’s no need for overlapping offerings or messages.

Workbooks also integrates seamlessly with more than 30 different software systems and implementation took less than six weeks.

Law Business Research is a publishing, events and digital information business specialising in international business law and global legal markets. The company had more than 400 data sources which made reporting extremely complicated. Since implementing Workbooks, contact data is held centrally, enabling better reporting, and also a better view of all touchpoints. Productivity has increased. It is easier to onboard new staff now that there are set processes in place. The marketing team say leads have increased 240%, conversions by 130% and overall revenue by over 10%.

Once the contact data had been centralised, the marketing team at Law Business Research began to use the marketing automation capabilities within the platform to personalise content sent to subscribers and prospects. The team is also able to organise and manage events through Workbooks, from sending invitations to managing registrations and payments and more.


Prices start from £21 per user per month. However, as anyone who has implemented CRM in the past knows, the license cost is only one part of the equation: the real cost is the time and effort from the business to move to a new platform and adopt a new, more efficient way of working.

So, while price is important, what really matters at the end of the day is ROI. Let’s say you can improve the outcomes of your organisation by 20%. And that the cost is around 5% of your current payroll spend. Seems like a no-brainer right?

This is actually the first step we take when engaging with a new prospect. Helping them understand what value CRM can bring to their business and the business case behind it.

What are other people doing in the space and why?

Many other vendors out there keep throwing more and more features into their platforms.

While innovation is key, as a strategic partner to our clients we need to make sure their organisations can realise value from that innovation. This is the reason we put as much effort into the adoption and value realisation of the technology as we do into the technology itself.

How do you view the future?

Bright! We see a real gap in the market when it comes to serving mid-sized companies with a business management platform they can successfully implement and realise value from – both in terms of cost and complexity.

We are continually looking for ways to improve both our technology and our processes to help our customers be successful!

Anything else we should know about?

At Workbooks we believe in helping clients turn their investment into real business outcomes. We run “Shared Success Workshops” with prospects and jointly fund it. The workshop helps define what success looks like for a particular publisher. We discuss business outcomes, CRM requirements and help draft a CRM project roadmap, resource requirements and proposed budget.

Once we have a shared vision of success, we match a customer’s investment in Workbooks licences with free consulting days. This ensures that you get onto the platform quickly and cost-effectively, and reduces substantially time-to-value. Our aim is ultimately to make our customers successful both as businesses and individuals.

CRM has been around for many many years but has more often than not failed to deliver on its promise. Here at Workbooks, we want to change that, by providing a platform that enables our customers to run their business efficiently (with customer information accessible at every touchpoint), in a cost-effective way.

Thank you.