Tag Archives: subscription

Why I’ll be subscribing to a dead-tree newspaper this year

The previously online-only publication/club The Frontline Club is launching a broadsheet – and I have just subscribed.

My reasons are simple – and it’s nothing to do with content. It’s about community, and supporting a principle. (It’s for the same reasons (and free music) that I pay a monthly subscription to Bearded Magazine.)

I suspect community and the social contacts engendered and supported by the web will become an increasingly important part of news business models, and I wish The Frontline Club all the best in their efforts to explore this.

Oh, and you can subscribe here.

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Why should a subscription only TV channel let anyone view its news online?

I recently heard about a TV news website that’s only accessible to subscribers to the TV channel. They are resisting moving to an open access model because they believe people stick with the TV channel because of that news: opening up the site, they argue, would give people less of a reason to stay with the service. Continue reading

Making money from journalism: new media business models (A model for the 21st century newsroom pt5)

In the final part of the Model for the 21st Century Newsroom I look at how new media has compounded problems in news organisations’ core business models – and the new business models which it could begin to explore.

Let’s start by looking at the traditional newspaper business model. This has rested on selling, in a broad simplification, three things:

  • Advertising. Put more explicitly: selling readers to advertisers.
  • Selling content to readers, and, twinned with that:
  • Selling the delivery platform to readers – i.e. the paper

Developments in the past few decades have eaten into each of those areas as follows: Continue reading

Independent music magazine shows a web-savvy business model

A former student of mine, Gareth Main, has launched his own magazine, and on the whole I’m pretty impressed with his business model and online approach. Bearded Magazine covers the independent music industry, is free and distributed through shops, and already has a website and (well designed) MySpace page. Users can subscribe to receive email updates, view online PDFs (with hyperlinks – although these could be better signposted), sign up to an RSS feed, talk on the forum, browse the photo gallery (by band, venue, category or photographer – nice touch), and listen to podcasts. The user can also order a physical copy of the mag through a Paypal link

Gareth takes up the story: Continue reading

Magazines: Web Sites will be about UGC & video

It’s all about user-driven content and video says MediaWeek of the Magazine Publishers of America conference:

“Marthastewart.com, the umbrella Web site of Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, this summer will introduce new ways for audience members to share information with each other, said Susan Lyne, president and CEO, MSLO. And as MSLO looks for growth avenues, it’s looking at community sites, among other acquisitions.

“Dennis Publishing also is embracing user-driven content, though in a different way. Stephen Colvin, president and CEO, who joined Lyne on the panel, said Dennis’ Maxim magazine has in the works MyMaxim.com. Launching in three to four weeks, the new site will let visitors customize the text, images and video they see when they go there

“Executives noted that the Web has become a strong source of new subscriptions and in so doing, helped magazines lower their direct mail costs.

“Case in point is Blueprint, the lifestyle/shopping magazine MSLO launched with a test issue in May 2006, and which will publish bimonthly this year. The magazine derived two-thirds of its subscriptions for its first two issues from the Internet, Lyne said.

DMNews also reports that “155 magazine digital initiatives have been activated” at the conference:

“MPA members who announced digital initiatives included BusinessWeek, which will offer exclusive online content, a mobile edition for PDAs and cell phones, online business school rankings and multiplatform distribution of rich media and video content.

“Conde Nast, who this year will produce an online film festival, user-generated content on Web sites, interactive dating blogs, an online video series, an online radio station, bridal sites with virtual fitting rooms and PDA-enabled editions with mobile sites and text shopping/buying from cell phones. ”

“A section of Magazine Digital Initiatives has been created on the MPA’s Web site at www.magazine.org. It offers complete, detailed lists of new products and platforms for consumer magazines.

“The lists will be updated weekly and feature information with links to press releases and articles where available.”

Pay if you want a voice

That seems to be the subtext of Pearson chief executive Dame Marjorie Scardino’s statement,  as the Guardian reports that FT.com is likely to continue to rely on subscription revenues:

“As debate online has become more diffuse – hundreds of thousands or millions of voices on each topic – it has become less helpful in a way,” she said. “The trend now online seems to be some sort of mediation and we think we might have a role there.”

[…] “she said that the 90,000 subscribers to FT.com represent a “rarified audience” including senior figures in business and politics across the world and “We have found that to some extent with the quality of audience we have got we can provoke the discussion”.”

And to think some people used to dream that the internet would give a voice to those without power…