FT.com in drive to attract students

Financial Times 2The Financial Times is launching a Facebook application in a bid to target a younger audience. It will launch today (March 6) and will offer students and graduates free subcriptions to FT.com.

The aim is to convert students into longer-term FT users, also allowing them to invite friends to take up the offer.

The free subscription will last one year and is worth £98.99. Students will then be able to renew the subscription up to four times. The company claims it is the first time a newspaper has offered a free subscription in this way.

It comes a week after the launch of the FT Telecoms, Media and Technology Executive Forum, a new social network aimed at executives in the media, telecoms and technology industries (MW.co.uk, February 25).

Ien Cheng, publisher and managing editor of FT.com, says: “There is an increasing demand from university and MBA students for access to the FT’s quality of insight and reporting and the new Facebook application will enable them to access that premium content for free.”

FT.com reported a 30% increase in monthly unique users last year 2007, with an average of 5.7 million, compared to 4.4 million in 2006.

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