Return to INMA Knows

INMA Knows

Smart pricing

“INMA Knows” is a content surfacing project designed to personally curate all association resources on a single subject of high interest to INMA members

Introduction

INMA Researcher-in-Residence Greg Piechota is spending a lot of time focused on the smart pricing of subscriptions these days. And if Greg is interested in a topic, the media industry should be, too.  A lot of publishers built volume of subscribers in the COVID year because of the COVID bump. But now actually is the time to make it a real business,” he says. Pricing is the fastest and most effective way for media businesses to increase profits. In the COVID year, pricing policy proved to be one of the most debated issues in the news industry, starting with decisions on whether to lift paywalls early in the pandemic, moving to different approaches to free and paid trials, and ending with the urgency to raise ARPU to make up for the lost ad revenue. Here is our curated selection of what INMA members saw as the most profitable approaches to pricing in the short and long term, as well as the best practices in introducing price increases. 

Dawn McMullan

— Dawn McMullan, INMA

Exclusive INMA material on “Smart pricing”

Sort by: Most Important   |   Most Recent

Results of a 400% price increase after 4 years at Politiken

INMA Presentation File

23 February 2021

Read More

INMA Readers-First outlook for 2021 and beyond

INMA Presentation File

25 February 2021

Read More

Politiken, Boston Globe, Malaysiakini share subscription pricing success stories

During the fourth of five modules of the INMA Media Subscriptions Summit 4.0, three news media companies shared their pricing journeys — explaining what has and has not worked along the way.

23 February 2021

Read More

The more Dennik N readers pay, the less they read

Researcher-in-Residence Grzegorz Piechota shares how a Slovakian news site discovered its most valuable subscribers read little and didn’t care much about benefits. What can research teach us about this phenomenon?

15 July 2020

Read More

Engagement-based pricing, B2B customer success focus at Financial Times

INMA Presentation File

25 February 2021

Read More

What if readers who pay more actually read less?

Research studying 157 news outlets shows subscribers place much value on the non-editorial benefits of their news subscriptions, meaning the user experience likely is more important than premium perks.

15 July 2020

Read More

Low price sensitivity opens doors for digital subscription pricing optimisation

As digital subscribers continue to grow as a share of total circulation volume, the need to monetise these audiences will become increasingly important.

29 September 2020

Read More

How do we research value and test offers to drive growth

INMA Presentation File

28 February 2020

Read More

What research, case studies indicate about raising digital subscription prices

The relationship between digital engagement, longevity, and price increases were the focus of an INMA Readers First meet-up, featuring case studies from Dennik N, Piano, and Mather Economics.

09 January 2020

Read More

Segment customers by churn risk, price elasticity for long-term profitability

Knowing whether a reader is a high or low churn risk or has high or low price elasticity will help news media companies determine how to price and present products to them.

08 June 2020

Read More

What do common paywalls, cancellation ethics, and engagement pricing look like?

Researcher-in-Residence Grzegorz Piechota reports on the state of paywalls in February and March, the ethics of charging readers who aren’t reading, and Financial Times’ engagement-based pricing model.

25 May 2020

Read More

Schibsted shares its model for reducing repeat purchase behaviour

Schibsted is fine-tuning a model to reduce repeat purchase behaviour in subscribers who jump around trial periods and promotional campaigns. This long-term goal is working to evolve away from the discount mindset.

20 January 2020

Read More

Benchmarks show importance of news subscriber yield management

Subscription yield management, which includes pricing strategy as well as tactics related to audience revenue growth, is a field of analysis that has very high ROI for publishers. Here’s why.

12 April 2021

Read More

Daily Memphian reaches 12-month subscription goal in 3 weeks

Audience testing allowed The Daily Memphian teams to deploy and manage offers, pricing, and messaging as they worked toward their launch. One year in, the company was able to increase its paywall rate by 30% and reach digital subscription goals.

29 March 2021

Read More

Funke Mediengruppe almost triples digital subscribers in 1 year

Reducing the volume of advertising and increasing customer lifetime value (CLTV) were key to Funke Mediengruppe’s successful digital strategy, creating a business model to pay for local journalism.

28 March 2021

Read More

Accelerating acquisition, retention with new pricing policy, check-out experience at Malaysiakini

INMA Presentation File

23 February 2021

Read More

Optimising trial offers to maximise subscription revenue at Boston Globe

INMA Presentation File

23 February 2021

Read More

The Matchup, Athletic share sports readership strategies, COVID bump continues

INMA Researcher-in-Residence Grzegorz Piechota digs into a new initiative among local publishers in the United States called The Matchup, as well as how The Athletic has doubled its subscriber base amid the pandemic. Also, news of the COVID bump coming to an end has been greatly exaggerated.

17 September 2020

Read More

Casual payments could be the answer if media advertising vanishes

A Webinar for INMA members questioned what the media landscape would look like without advertising revenue and looked at potential transformation strategies to replace that revenue and grow more successfully.

09 September 2020

Read More

The Hindu shares 7 fundamentals of a successful digital subscription business

A Webinar with The Hindu led INMA members through the seven fundamentals that have helped bring it digital subscriptions success — from pricing to embracing failure to prioritising journalism.

25 August 2020

Read More

Finding out what audience “power users” want is key to charging for premium content

The Weather Channel has found success in charging for premium tools and content by identifying its power users and finding out what they want.

20 August 2020

Read More

Weather Channel charges premium for content largely available for free

There is no data or content out there more readily available for free than the weather. But The Weather Channel has created a strategy that allows it to monetise a small percentage of its audience that is willing to pay a premium for better information and more powerful tools.

13 August 2020

Read More

Times of London shares 10 lessons learned in a decade of paid content

Alan Hunter of The Times of London shared with INMA members paywall success lessons like committing to an initiative, creating a reader habit, and not giving away your content.

08 July 2020

Read More

3 strategies to end your digital subscription plateau

Recent case study examples show extending promotional terms, increasing the amount of premium content, and reducing friction during the checkout process are a few ways media companies can break through and advance their digital subscription goals.

01 July 2020

Read More

Trial subscription wins, loyalty club shifts amid the pandemic

Subscribers who converted during the pandemic are churning less than usual, quite likely because of the engaging news cycle. Another change during the crisis is a creativity of loyalty club programmes.

15 June 2020

Read More

Paywalls that target users on propensity modelling outperform other models

Researcher-in-Residence Grzegorz Piechota shares his most recent research on targeted paywalls, churn benchmarks, and cross-regional news bundles.

02 June 2020

Read More

Financial Times uses engagement-based pricing to better interact with group subscribers

The FT grants access to all registered team members or employees but charges only “core readers” who read nine or more articles a month.

31 May 2020

Read More

Research: Publisher strategies to keep readers post-pandemic

As the coronavirus pandemic makes its way across Europe and into the United States, here is a statistical look at what publishers are doing with paywalls, discounted trials, and how much COVID-19 content audiences are reading.

31 March 2020

Read More

8 trends help publishers get, keep digital subscribers

Less free content and longer promotional periods are two noteworthy trends in the digital subscription space.

27 January 2020

Read More

Top Web resources on “Smart pricing”