Digital Subscriptions for Print Publishers: A Deep Dive

MACMA Webinar: Generating Subscription Revenue with Paywalls

Leaky Paywall’s own Pete Ericson presents for the Media, Audience & Content Marketing Association. 

This session does a deep dive on setting up your digital publication to succeed with the subscription model. It goes through making the most of your paywall and email newsletter, including best practices, metrics, and case studies on growing your revenue.

The Highlights

The whole thing is rich with vital information, but here’s just a few highlights:

  • The most important tactics for growing your subscription revenue are building your email list and growing your digital subscriptions.
  • The current challenges for print publishers include:
    • The mindset: making digital content a priority rather than an afterthought.
    • Making your digital articles search-friendly & socially shareable: that means using your premium content.
    • PDFs and flip books are not friendly to search or social (and they may hurt your revenue and traffic stats, too.)
  • A metered paywall allows you to use all of your best content as a lure to readers without devaluing it: it makes all of your content available to search engines but limits the number of articles actual readers can access without subscribing.
  • Creating a digital archive out of back issues creates a bigger pool of bait for searchers and creates a premium product for you to sell.
  • Most of your traffic is casual visitors: these are your biggest opportunity.
    • The best way to convert casual visitors is to capture their email and send them your newsletter.
    • The longer someone receives your newsletter, the higher the chance that they’ll subscribe.
  • The subscription journey begins with a free registration level:
    • Set your metered paywall to a few articles.
    • When the reader has run through their free articles, offer them the opportunity to get more…if they register with just their email address.
    • Now you’ve begun the relationship. Add them to your newsletter.
    • Keep sending them your amazing content. It sends them back to your publication to read, thus using up their allowance of free articles again.
    • Eventually, they’ll get tired of hitting that barrier and they will subscribe.
  • Get a template for converting paid subscriptions, based on real-life examples.

Watch the whole session for more great tips and examples.

Any questions or comments? Ready to get started growing your subscription revenue with a paywall? Let’s talk.

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