Subscriptions renewal marketing: are you up to date?

Subscriptions renewal marketing is a specialised and vital business, but it exists in a kind of ‘publishers never-never land’.

It’s easy to see why renewals are left until it’s too late to achieve anything worthwhile – they are seen as a pension, forgotten until it’s time to collect.

That’s because publishing is a deadline business – we all work to tight schedules and that means waiting until the last minute to do our work. But it’s foolish to take a deadline attitude with renewals. Here’s why:

Renewal income is the basis on which your whole subscription business is measured. The rate at which your subscribers renew determines:

1. Your profits

2. The number of new subscribers you need to attract each year

3. The value of your business

4. Your marketing and staff costs

Renewals are the most important aspect of subscriptions marketing and publishing. Professional subscription publishers take big profits from renewals and base the financial viability of their promotions on the second and subsequent years.

The main difference between the usual direct marketing and subscription marketing is this:

For subscription marketing to be successful all planning and creative work must maximise the life-time profitability of the customer

How to maximise the value of each new subscriber
If you are not using up-to-date renewal techniques you are losing money. It’s as simple as that. Automatic renewals for print and web-based publications are well established, and, if used correctly, will push your renewal rates upwards. But the latest techniques go even further. They cost little to implement and will take the profitability of your subscriber file to new levels.

Updating your renewal marketing is the easy way to boost your publication’s profits. Here are two questions that will reveal how you are currently doing:

1. How to do you keep up-to-date with best practice renewal marketing? If you are not reviewing and implementing the latest methods at least annually, you are losing money

2. Do you use at least an eight-part, state-of-the-art upgrade and renewal series? It’s this that will keep your subscribers with you for longer

If you are implementing the latest techniques, then rest assured you are probably the only publisher in your market using a progressive and effective upgrade program!

This is how you build the ‘high renewal factor’ into every promotion and subscriptions renewal series:

1. Create early-bird renewals and extension offers to bring cash forward

2. Use premiums to lift renewals and know when to avoid them!

3. Introduce continuous authority payment methods to lift renewals to 90% and beyond (there is a special technique that works for b2b titles)

4. Isolate and cure your higher ‘reader turnover’ problems

5. Regularly create a complete renewal series for your title, from conception to expiry

Most promotional innovations in the UK come from newsletter publishers. They are the publishers who rely on subscriptions marketing to make money. They regularly test techniques that can be used to promote both consumer and business publications.

Subscriptions marketing: confidential information for sale, with four special reports free of charge

The Subscriptions Strategy newsletter publishes international case studies of ‘best practice’ marketing for the Internet, websites, newsletters, books and magazines etc.

As publishers ourselves, we live or die by results. If a promotion doesn’t work, we lose money. If it works we record the results and use it on our own, and our clients’ websites and publications.

Every issue of the Subscriptions Strategy newsletter carries examples of successful marketing.

How you benefit by removing risk
As far as we are concerned, our testing means the difficult and costly part is over. As far as you are concerned, you can benefit from this tried and tested knowledge because the risk of failure has been removed and profitability is assured.

You will also find Subscriptions Strategy a great resource for training staff in all aspects of subscriptions marketing.

Please click on the link below for instant access to your subscriptions marketing starter pack. You receive:

1. 20% off the full price of an annual 6-issue subscription to the digital edition of the Subscriptions Strategy newsletter (a saving of £40)

2. Subscription Marketing Workbook worth £33: 15 Subscriptions Marketing Innovations Every Publisher Should Know

3. Subscriptions marketing ‘rapid update’: three special Subscriptions Strategy reports worth a total of £99 to bring you up to date with best practice marketing procedures for online and traditional subscription marketing

You pay just £157, a total saving of £211. If the material does not come up to expectations, email, write or phone for a full refund. This guarantee is valid for the lifetime of your subscription and can be exercised at any time.

Grab a big discount on The Subscriptions Strategy newsletter! A year’s supply of the UK’s top inside source of subscriptions marketing information: