How Morning Brew sold their email newsletter for $75 million

Are you a business or financial professional that needs to stay on top of the latest news and opinions in your field? Then you’ll want to sign up for the Morning Brew email!

For example, if you’re a stockbroker, you may have read the Wall Street Journal in the past. If you’re interested in politics, you would have been reading the Washington Post. But what if you’re looking for a broader range of news? What if you don’t want to waste your time reading long-winded news outlets full of adverts and stories you don’t care about?

Morning Brew is a daily email that keeps you updated on everything from Wall Street to Silicon Valley. Morning Brew makes staying up to date fun and simple, delivering all you need to know in only 5 minutes.

How Did The Morning Brew Newsletter Grow?

He began emailing his pal’s business news digests, titled The Market Corner initially and formatted as a PDF, in late 2014. Austin Rief, a fellow business student, was one of the first subscribers. He reached out to Lieberman to offer his assistance. Rief, now 24, was brought on as a co-founder and COO by Lieberman, who launched Morning Brew before he graduated in 2015.

Both Lieberman and Rief would have to wait another two years before they could work full-time on Morning Brew (Lieberman left Morgan Stanley in 2016, and Rief graduated in 2017), but progress was quick after that. In late 2017, they raised $750,000 in a seed round from friends and family, and in January 2018, they had 125,000 followers. 

Morning Brew had 700,000 subscribers by the time Lieberman and Rief were named to Forbes’ 30 Under 30 Media List in November. The newsletter now has an average of 120,000 new subscribers each month and a 45 per cent unique open rate, which is above the industry norm.

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    Who Are The Brains Behind Morning Brew News?

    Morning Brew began as a small and lean operation but has since expanded to a staff of over 30 people, including authors, graphic designers, sales, developers, community managers, and so on.

    Alex Lieberman (CEO) and Austin Rief (COO) are the two co-founders, and Morning Brew is their first firm, according to LinkedIn. It’s pretty nice to see that all of the crew members’ emails (including Alex and Austin’s) are retained on the website.

    The Brew Offers An Excellent Affiliate Program

    Your email address is traced to an affiliate system that rewards everything. It starts from access to the special Sunday newsletter to plane rides to the Brew HQ for those who manage to send 1000 subs their way once you subscribe.

    As of this writing, here’s how the affiliate system works:

    Morning Brew Also Publishes Other Newsletters

    With only your daily business, Brew, you’re not getting enough of a roundup news fix? In addition, they publish the following newsletters:

    1. The Turnout (a political newsletter)
    2. Emerging Technology Cocktail (tech news & events, as it sounds)
    3. Brews for sale in stores (covers the retail markets)

    How Morning Brew Generates 95% Of Its Revenue Through Email Monetisation

    Morning Brew is one of the few media companies that recognise the power of email. According to Digiday, the company’s income climbed from $3 million to $13 million last year “on the back of a single email newsletter.”

    Morning Brew’s email newsletter, geared at the modern business executive, reaches over 2 million individuals daily. Since then, they’ve added various speciality newsletters to their lineup, including Emerging Tech, Retail Brew, and Marketing Brew.

    Let’s break down the steps the Morning Brew team did to make this campaign successful so you can fully appreciate the effectiveness of their efforts and how you can apply them to your own marketing efforts.

    Identifying Campaign Objectives

    The Morning Brew team began by determining the campaign’s objectives. In this situation, the team’s goal was to educate and inform millions of young professionals about the newest technology and business developments. At the same time, this type of material is typically delivered in a dry and thick fashion that is unappealing to young readers.

    Overcoming Obstacles

    Morning Brew had several difficulties right away, one of which resulted from their lack of experience in the email area. Morning Brew was a small firm with only a few employees when they initially started looking at Email Marketing methods. Their collective understanding of the field was not broad.

    Morning Brew needed a partner who could assist them in teaching their staff about this space as they grew. They needed a basis for their workers to produce significant outcomes, whether by setting up re-engagement initiatives or introducing automated mailings.

    Email Advertising Profits In The Morning Brew Grew

    Morning Brew increased their engagement metrics by leaps and bounds after switching to Campaign Monitor. Morning brew had an average open rate of 22% before the transition. It now has a 50% open rate, which is a significant improvement. In addition, the deliverability of emails to inboxes has improved. It has gone from 60 per cent inbox deliverability to 99 per cent deliverability in a year.

    Morning brew has had excellent results for all of their KPIs after utilising Campaign Monitor. Here are a few examples of which they are incredibly proud.

    • In just eight months, open rates went from 20% to 47%.
    • Daily newsletters have a 15% click-through rate.
    • Deliverability rating of 99 per cent (compared to 60 per cent with MailChimp)
    • their emails were relocated from the promotional area to a subscriber’s inbox via Gmail.


    Morning Brew, founded by Alex Lieberman and Austin Rief, has grown from a dorm-room experiment to a $75 million media firm in less than six years, becoming one of the go-to destinations for millennials looking for business news. Since its inception as a daily newsletter, the company has grown dramatically. It sold majority ownership to media group Insider last year, which should help it continue to expand.

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      Author Bio

      Noor is a content writer for Letterwell focusing on email sponsorship and marketing news. She loves long form journalism and writes in her spare time. Noor has graduated with honors with a Bachelors in English Literature from the prestigious University of Engineering & Technology (UET) Lahore.

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