Welcome to the new look newsletter on a new platform, Beehiiv. A big thanks to Esther Kezia-Thorpe at Media Voices for helping me narrow down which newsletter platform to choose. I could tell when we were doing our State of the Digital Publishing Report at Pugpig that we were on the cusp of a new tack strategically for media as the economic cycle was turning. As looks ahead, predictions and forecasts come out for 2023, subscriber retention has shot to the top of many lists. FT Strategy found that retention is the top priority for 68% of the subscription businesses that they spoke to, according to What’s New in Publishing.
On that theme, WAN-IFRA looks at the playbook that the Star-Tribune in the US has for retaining its subscribers. They have focused on getting email contacts for their subscribers, and they focus on getting their subscribers to renew that first time.
Plus, INMA looks at the product priorities of publishers and finds that personalisation and new content format intended to engage audiences are high on the list. So much of what publishers are focused on relates to efforts to engage and retain audiences.
And we have a brief social media platform roundup with a look at the expected impact of a new online safety bill in the UK and the most recent ructions at Twitter, where it has become clear that they shut off API access to certain third-party apps.
As I settle in with Beehiiv, things might change a bit over the coming weeks. If you have any suggestions please feel free to drop me an email or message on Twitter @kevglobal. Thanks for coming along for the move.
George Adelman, Principal, FT Strategies in a new report, says that we’re entering a third phase of the subscription economy, according to a summary from What’s New in Publishing. Beginning around the turn of the century, subscriptions began to take hold, and then he points to COVID as a period that drove subscriptions. Now, we are entering the retention phase.
The retention phase will likely be one in which consumers will be more reserved about their spending and will be more likely to jump from one subscription to another to find the best fit for their needs.
They have aligned the organisation around the goal of getting new subscribers to renew for the first time. That is the best indicator of whether they will develop a long-term relationship with a subscriber, and they frequently reinforce the quality and effort of their content. Email is a key component, and they send content-led emails twice a month to try to re-engage inactive subscribers.
Social Media Roundup: Platforms prep for fallout from UK online safety bill, and Twitter shuts off API to some apps
The FT (£) looks at how social media platforms are preparing for a new online safety bill in the UK. They are expecting to see a drop in users due to the bill.
This weekend my wife was upset because Tweetbot, which she uses to manage tweets for her business went offline. It was no accident John Gruber of Daring Fireball says as he refers to internal Slack messages first reported by The Information that show that this was a deliberate move by Elon Musk’s Twitter.
Social Media Today says that Tweebot and Twitterific were two of the apps affected by the API change. Twitter under Musk continues to make erratic moves with little communication with partners or customers.
The developer community has been highly critical of Twitter’s actions, which it says are unprofessional and represent ‘an unrecoverable breach of trust between it and its developers and users’.