Briefing Media & Farmers Guardian

New e-commerce, CMS and subscription-fulfilment platform for Briefing Media and Farmers Guardian.

Briefing Media & Farmers Guardian

The Company

Briefing Media was established in 2010 to buy and develop business-to-business media assets, and has developed an multi-platform agriculture media group reaching around 250,000 farming decision makers.

That group includes farming and agricultural publisher ‘Farmers Guardian’: an established print, and recently online, publication founded in 1844.

The Problems

Briefing Media and Farmers Guardian needed two key systems

  1. A fully responsive e-commerce system, website and CMS
  2. A back-end subscription fulfilment platform, involving integration with a 3rd party bureau

Potential issues included:

  • the complexities of migration from an existing subscription fulfilment system to a new supplier
  • replacing an existing CMS platform with a new supplier (and migrating existing content)
  • defining business rules and specification for the dynamic bundling of products, content and subscriptions level
  • monetising content
  • providing a highly effective, responsive, user experience.

The Solutions

Briefing Media engaged CG Consultancy to provide consultancy and interim project management over a 16-month period
to cover the full project lifecycle from inception through to implementation and delivery of the two new systems.

CG Consultancy formed a project workgroup consisting of key stakeholders from the Farmers Guardian and Briefing Media businesses, in both London and Preston offices to begin collating and documenting business requirements for the two key systems.

Our interim project manager involved external creative agencies, technology suppliers – both new and existing – along with key internal stakeholders to conduct the project, with weekly project progress meeting and daily oversight in terms of ongoing tasks and actions.

After identifying best-of-breed suppliers in the industry, CG Consultancy conducted an RFP process before selecting two key systems based on functional requirement fit as well as cost and ability to scale to match future business requirements.

The two systems chosen were Affino ( as the core e-commerce CMS platform and CIRCData ( ) for subscription fulfilment management.

CG Consultancy then produced initial system architecture proposals to identify how these cloud-based platforms would integrate and communicate: this formed the basis of key technology discussions between the suppliers.

The project was successfully delivered in March 2015; with the launch of a highly responsive and well-received website for the farming industry, raising the bar for the agricultural sector.

“Our subscription membership proposition is key to the growth of Briefing Media.

"We needed to link our back office systems to our CMS in order to deliver a tailored and tiered online experience for farmers. CG Consultancy helped us to identify and vet various suppliers and then worked with our internal team to project manage and deliver our new FGInsight service.

"I was impressed by Chris’ hands on approach and the way in which he managed a complex process with many moving parts. We’re delighted with the results achieved.”

Rory Brown, Co-Founder, Briefing Media Ltd.

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