Hello! — I'm Jim Lamiell, Sr. Product Manager at The New York Times

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I specialize in understanding and pursuing product opportunities, guiding day-to-day development toward organizational goals, and measuring success through qualitative and quantitative testing.

 

Discovery

Uncovering the unmet needs of potential customers is the first step in pursuing a product opportunity. I have experience in interviewing users, ideating with teams, and presenting to stakeholders.

Management

Ensuring the organization's goals and user's needs are being met by the product's design and development is essential for success and something I manage on a day-to-day basis.

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Testing

Going by gut can be a helpful part of decision-making, but not as the only input. I turn hypotheses into actionable insights through qualitative and quantitative testing with users.

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Feel free to view some of my work featured on this site, or go here to download a resume, request my portfolio, or contact me.

Charting a new revenue stream for NYT Cooking

What if digital recipe content was actually worth subscribing to? No doubt there are plenty of resources already in the market to help home cooks decide what to make, but quantity is always a poor substitute for actual quality when it comes to recipes. And with NYT Cooking’s staff of trusted journalists, excellent user experience and helpful functionality, our team was poised to provide that quality on a regular basis.

In June 2017, NYT Cooking launched a subscription product to pursue this opportunity, asking users to pay a monthly or yearly cost to gain unlimited access to our recipe database and support our mission.

Below is a quick overview of our subscription product experience, taking the user from account creation to free trial to post-free trial friction and conversion.

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New users to NYT Cooking are asked to create an account to access the product, and are automatically enrolled in a 28-day free trial.

Free trialers are reminded frequently that they only have temporary access and are asked to subscribe when possible.

NYT Cooking also reaches out to free trialers via email to onboard them to our product features and recipe database.

After a free trial, users are presented with a paywall if they try to access a non-featured recipe or a premium feature.

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To hear more about this project, or others like it, request a portfolio here.

Testing the appetite for a-la-carte premium content

Visit The New Essentials of French Cooking >

NYT Cooking publishes new recipes weekly, offering a never-ending stream of inspiration for tonight’s dinner or the weekend brunch. But sometimes users want to step away from the quotidian and up their game in the kitchen with instruction that builds mastery, and might be willing to pay extra for that kind of one-off moment.

We created The New Essentials of French Cooking as a way to quantitatively test this idea, by packaging ten definitive chapters on french cuisine as a “digital cookbook” and either giving it away for free for some users, or “selling” it (via a mock paywall) at several price points to establish just how valuable it could be.

Below depicts both how we marketed and promoted the premium package at different prices (or for free), and what the user actually could access post-purchase. 

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The digital cookbook is composed of ten chapters (e.g. Omelet, Soufflé) that link to exclusive instructional content developed by NYT Cooking.

A fourth of users were told they could get it for free. For the rest, we evenly tested three price points via a mock payflow.

Post-purchase, the content was automatically saved in a user’s Recipe Box so that the user could easily recall it.

Promotion for The New Essentials of French Cooking spanned the entire NYT ecosystem, from our social accounts to the homepage of our news site.

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To hear more about this project, or others like it, request a portfolio here.

Making the standard of digital journalism even better

The Article Page has been one of the constant expressions of our reporting since the start of our digital presence (the other being the homepage). Therefore it needed a team that was dedicated to discovering, through testing and informed decision-making, how to gradually improve the template to stay competitive in a quickly changing landscape. Through this focus on the article page template, we aimed to incrementally increase engagement metrics across the board: from how many articles were viewed per visit, to the completion rates of our articles.

The result? Greater optimization of our article-to-article traffic, and insights into what works - and more importantly, what doesn't - in gaining more engagement from our readers.

A handful of the team's experiments can be seen below.

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Hypothesis: Once a reader is done with the article, should we show the most emailed stories to entice another click, or something more social across Facebook and Twitter, and more importantly real-time?

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Hypothesis: Are readers who finish an article more likely to go to another article, or share the one they're currently on? What's more valuable to us?

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Hypothesis: If a persistent bar offering up other stories were always present, even mid-article, would we entice readers who lost interest in another click?

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To hear more about this project, or others like it, request a portfolio here.

Giving Times photography a new web presence

Photography plays an integral part in how The New York Times reports the news; just ask any number of the award-winning photographers who work in the newsroom. However, the existing Times slideshow experience for desktop and tablets was outdated, no longer fit for readers who demand responsive sites that grow or shrink the image to fit the viewport and make the viewing experience as pleasant as possible. The benefits of improving our slideshows, however, could extend beyond our users: a single template can make production work far simpler, and responsivity opens the door for smarter placement of advertising.

The result? Double the completion rates of our slideshows (vs. the old, unresponsive template) and greater monetization through the improved ad unit.

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An introductory card to explain and contextualize the slideshow

An individual slideshow card, with image, caption, ad unit, and sharing capabilities

The end of slideshow experience, linking to a related article as well as other slideshows from that section

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To hear more about this project, or others like it, request a portfolio here.