Pricing is more science than art. This study shares some industry data about common pricing tactics.
Consumer revenueSubscribe to Updates Consumer revenue — that is, making money directly from your audiences — is critical for news enterprises of all types. It comes in many forms — subscriptions and memberships, of course, but also donations, crowdfunding, events, merchandise, e-commerce, and others. While the news industry has a rich history in generating support from audiences (print subscriptions, public media fund drives) in an analog world, the skills, capabilities, technology and other disciplines to excel digitally are a different story altogether.
Big Picture A primer on consumer revenue
Consumer revenue can take many forms, namely: subscriptions, membership and donations. And while these three types of consumer revenue serve unique audience needs/interests, the discipline required to execute each is very similar.
Plan Strategic considerations for consumer revenue
This multi-section report unpacks reader motivations to subscribe.
This report from API examines what news organizations can learn from a deeper knowledge of the emotional and behavioral factors that affect people’s subscription decisions.
The three major reasons readers decide to pay for news and the four major benefits they get from doing so.
An international, qualitative survey of why readers pay for news and what they think about various consumer revenue offers.
Learn how to focus on your best customers in building your overall value proposition.
A collection of best practices for talking to readers with practical, downloadable examples.
Whether subscription- or membership-based, are you pursuing the approach for the right reasons?
Do Tactics to help you grow consumer revenue
College newspapers at UNC and Duke University turned their storied basketball rivalry into a successful fundraising campaign by aiming at new donors, creating urgency, and collaborating to expand their capacity.
These detailed case studies from Digital Content Next and the Lenfest Institute explore the finer points of successful metering and revenue-driving calls to action for Tribune Media, Slate, and The Guardian.
Gwen Vargo from API rounds up examples of well-converting offer pages to demonstrate how their design influences trust and encourages conversion. Design choices at this important stage in the funnel can make or break subscription rates.
This study by the Medill Center at Northwestern University re-centers the importance of local content in encouraging daily news consumption, which the massive data project shows is the most likely predictor of subscription and retention. As simple as it seems, this change represents a dramatic reorientation of the KPI’s for news organizations pivoting from ad-based to reader-supported models.
Reporters can apply a mini-publisher perspective to drive subscription growth, as demonstrated by The Seattle Times as they roll their audience-focused experiments across the newsroom.
The Correspondent reveals how more than a year of relationship building and foundational work led to their successful $2.5 million crowdfunding campaign.
Based on his work transforming news organizations, Tim Griggs distills the essential elements of successful membership-driven news organizations. He adds a simple outline for the all-important gaps-assessment meeting for those just getting started. This outline is a good starting point for understanding the table stakes for membership-driven news organizations.
Examples from major news orgs and regional outlets fill this primer on the different dimensions on designing user flows that convert, gather reader data, and generate revenue.
Engaged, community-motivated journalism satisfies a public-service mission and generates powerful levers for earning audience support.
No single approach, even email marketing, can be the sole source of subscriber growth and consumer revenue. News organizations should connect with prospective subscribers, both on and offline with a diversified strategy. Gwen Vargo unpacks a portfolio of techniques through mini-case studies.
Peter Gray, The Wall Street Journal’s VP of Optimization, reminds publishers and mini-publishers about the simplest things that boost reader revenue. This quick read includes an outline of the WSJ’s iterative, testing process.
Email is key to reaching individual readers and measuring the success of subscription marketing. This primer from API’s Reader Revenue Toolkit covers technical and programmatic approaches to email capture.
End-of-year fundraising campaigns with foundation matches are both an art and a science, as an examination of ProPublica’s strategy reveals. Email, direct asks, and a campaign mindset helped the organization bring in more than one-third of its small dollar revenue during its December campaign.
Here’s an idea to steal and adapt: The Dallas Morning News, which has eight major college football programs in its coverage area and just two full-time writers dedicated to them, concentrated on its smallest but most local school and turned it into a digital subscription success story.
An in-depth, quantitative study of messages, mediums, images, and subscription types demonstrates low ROI for Facebook ad spend and glimmers of promise in email subscription appeals.
This roundup of resources offers practical, step-by-step guidance and case studies for how to beef up your digital subscription business.
Kunle Campbell shared key points to encourage potential subscribers to finish the checkout process, or at the bare minimum, fork over their email address. This technical and tactical guide comes complete with screenshots outlining UX best-practices from his Facebook Local News Subscription Accelerator session.
This example shows how membership perks can make engagement an opportunity for community and conversion.
This quick case study unpacks how The Star Tribune used middle of the funnel tactics to achieve 30 percent growth in digital subscriptions with Facebook distribution.
This case study outlines how a nonprofit news organization serving Vermont grew its audience, diversified its revenue base, and secured a game-changing financial investment with an entrepreneurial approach.
Helpful guidelines to consider as you compare your subscription offerings to competitors.
Here’s how you can use content marketing to target prospective subscribers off site — in this case, via Facebook.
Among the tips here: Cut page load times, create more/better email newsletter products, close site-access loopholes, and encourage registration based on page depth.
Think through whether membership is right for your enterprise with four clear questions.
How the relationship between recency, frequency and volume helps predict what subscribers will stick with you.
Lessons in membership programs, including the difference between “thick” and “thin” approaches.
The Guardian has transformed from teetering on financial oblivion to generating more revenue from readers than advertising.
A slew of tips on retention, including customer service specialization, value-added products, and re-engagement marketing.
Driving paying readers means optimizing content to create subscribers, something Scandinavian publishers are doing at a world-class rate.