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Posts Tagged ‘subscription’

New London [Conn.] Day launches Clickshare-powered multiplatform subscription service with “passport” to discounts

Posted on: September 14th, 2011 by Bill Densmore No Comments

The Day, of New London, Conn.,  went live with a multi-platform print and digital subscription service and membership program powered by Clickshare Service Corp. The new membership program offers unlimited access to its website, theday.com, including its premium online and mobile content.

“We take great pride in the quality journalism we provide to the communities we serve. We’ve spent nearly a decade building and establishing theday.com as a brand. That’s what is driving us to put a price on our growing digital platform,” said Gary Farrugia, The Day’s publisher.

The membership program, which ranges in price per month from $9.99 to $22.99 for top-of-the-line Platinum service, will begin on Wednesday, September 14. Current home delivery subscribers to The Day are automatically members in the new program once they complete their registration at theday.com. Non-member visitors to theday.com will be allowed up to 10 “premium” staff-written articles or features each month. Only members will be allowed commenting privileges on stories at theday.com.

As part of the new membership model, The Day also introduced a new members-only rewards program, The Day Passport, which includes rewards, events, and giveaways to local businesses, entertainment venues, and cultural institutions.

“We are shifting from an address-based print subscription model to a user-based content access model, whereby those who join will enjoy our award-winning products in all the forms that we publish them, as well as additional benefits and privileges,” said Daniel L. Williams, Director of Audience Development.

The Day’s introduction was covered by News & Technology  and by Poynter.com.

An early Clickshare user hits a 225-year milestone in Massachustts

Posted on: September 6th, 2011 by Bill Densmore No Comments

NORTHAMPTON, Mass. — The Daily Hampshire Gazette, a pioneer at using Clickshare’s subscription services to control access to its website, is 225 years old this month — one of the oldest continuously published newspapers in America. The paper provides this self portrait.

Emedia Vitals post recounts Concord Monitor “metered” experience

Posted on: September 2nd, 2011 by Bill Densmore No Comments

Writer Ellie Behling of the website emedia vitals posted a wrapup describing how four different U.S. dailies are using metered-access subscription systems on their websites. One of them featured in the Aug. 30, 2011 post was the Concord (N.H.) Monitor, a Clickshare client.


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Quoting from the post:

“John Winn Miller, publisher of The Concord Monitor, which launched a metered paywall in May, also found it was important to look for the best practices from what other papers wrere doing and be rigorous about having data for every opinion.

“It might sound obvious, but it can’t be overlooked: Publishers have to offer readers something worth paying for before they even think about putting up a paywall.

“The Concord Monitor, for instance, rolled out a complete redesign of its website shortly before the paywall, focusing on a more usable design and better local content. The paper also only puts local copy behind the paywall, since readers can’t get that type of content elsewhere.

“Miller noted that he was initially wary about reader acceptance of a paywall; after all, the statewide newspaper the Monitor competes with isn’t behind a paywall. ‘Typically if you’re in a competitive market you’re afraid to do anything,’ he said. Largely because of the newspaper’s research and preparation, the Monitor went forward with the paywall and the newspaper is enjoying a year-over-year online revenue boost.

Reports from the front: Three mid-sized papers describe their experience

Posted on: May 29th, 2011 by wdensmore No Comments

COLUMBIA, Mo. — Executives of three mid-sized papers offered field reports on charging for online content during a session at the Donald W. Reynolds Journalism Institute (RJI) at the Missouri School of Journalism. The April 26, 2011 session — involving papers in Missouri, Georgia and Oklahoma — is now archived as a video stream at the RJI website. In addition, Nieman Lab blog reporter Justin Ellis was in Columbia for the sessions and he’s written a summary, with links.  The video is on a page with more than 15 other video frames. Click on the main page, then scroll down to the No. 11 frame to launch and watch the session, entitled: “Reports from the Field on Paid Content.”
The papers covered are the Columbia [Mo.] Tribune, the Augusta [Ga.] Chronicle, and the Tulsa [Okla.] World.

CASE STUDY:
Clickshare’s multiplatform, free/paid metered ‘paywall’ puts two Vermont dailies ahead of subscription plan

Posted on: February 4th, 2011 by wdensmore 1 Comment

By Bill Densmore

RUTLAND, Vt., Feb. 4, 2011 — Converting a formerly free news website to hybrid free and subscription service is judged an early success by the family owner of the Pulitzer Prize-winning Rutland Herald and Barre-Montpelier Times Argus — and the ability of Clickshare to offer user-friendly, multi-platform registration, subscription, billing and access control is a key reason.

Paid online subscribers are above projections and reached the high-end of industry norms in less than four months, says Rob Mitchell, state editor of the combined-20,000-circulation dailies and the third-generation in the Mitchell’s family ownership of the two papers.

“As a subscription engine it’s worked out very well because it technically works very well,” Mitchell says of Clickshare.

Clickshare’s solution went live for the family’s customers on Oct. 1, and since then a total of 28,200 people have registered online for free, including readers from the Mitchell family’s four monthly regional business magazines (circulation about 40,000). “Some of them we would not have been able to connect with if it weren’t for this system,” says Mitchell, who heads the family’s online and mobile news delivery efforts.

Clickshare manages a single database for the papers and for four monthly business magazines operated by the Mitchell family as Vermont Community Media. The Clickshare technology handles one-account, one-ID, one-bill authentication and login of print subscribers and users on the web, mobile and soon-to-launch tablet applications. So readers and users can manage all access and billing from a single account.

“The business monthlies had never been integrated with our daily subscriptions,” says Mitchell. “Now they are, and this produces more activity for them online, and we can also market across all platforms.” In addition, the single sign on, single-account solution means Mitchell will be able to offer a variety of multiplatform subscription packages and bundles.

The family is following the emerging practice of a hybrid free-paid approach on the web.

Of the 28,200 registered users, about 7,500 are existing subscribers to the print dailies, who signed up to get free access to the newspaper’s web site. The other registrants have signed up for one of a variety of online and print packages, which may include some or all of the print newspaper, the web site, a new online e-Edition, and the mobile site.

Paid online subscribers are above projections, said Mitchell. He said his father, Publisher R. John Mitchell, had figured online paid subscribers would settle at around 2-3 percent of print circulation after a year. The actual number tracked after a little more than four months as 950 – already at 4.7 percent.

“My father surveyed the prices people were charging across the country and we basically took our print price and gave probably a 30-percent discount off that to make it attractive both to people who had discontinued their print subscription and to new subscribers,” says Mitchell.

The online annual subscription works out to $2.99 a week, says Mitchell. The minimum subscription length online – a month – works out to about $3.50 a week. A day pass – which Clickshare’s technology supports – is a dollar.

Mitchell says they’ll have to do some survey work to see how many of the 600 paying subscribers online are former print subscribers – they don’t know that yet. “A significant portion of them are either outside our print-delivery area or out of state,” says Mitchell. “That’s encouraging.”

As for print circulation and web advertising, Mitchell says: “We’re doing well. I think the paywall is helping us. I think we’ve benefited by being willing to take this step.” Mitchell thinks online advertisers will view registered and paid subscribers as more valuable than casual surfers. And, after three months of decline in web traffic – page views and daily visitors – the traffic trended back up in January, and showed an increase in online reader engagement.

“We will continue to market our online content as worth paying for, and do the newsgathering that will back up that promise,” Mitchell said. “And many of our readers have told us they are confident and happy that we are building a business model that will sustain our journalism well into the future.”

Waco’s editor’s advice about online web subscriptions: “Just do it”

Posted on: January 19th, 2011 by wdensmore No Comments

Michele McLellan of the Knight Digital Media Center Q&A’d the editor at the Waco, Texas, daily, about their nuanced online subscription strategy. Print subscriptions are up; print subs get online free; many have registered to do so. Advice from Waco Herald-Tribune Editor, Carlos Sanchez: ” . . . [W]e had just as much positive response as negative . . . just do it.” Also: “Our strategy was to market this not as a paywall but as a premium for print subscribers.” LINK TO FULL STORY.

Norfolk, Va., daily adopts Clickshare technology to manage iPad subscriptions; Clickshare passes 3 million registered users

Posted on: December 13th, 2010 by Bill Densmore No Comments

AMHERST, Mass., Dec. 13, 2010 – Clickshare Service Corp., a provider of user registration, authentication, access control and e-commerce services, today announced that The Virginian-Pilot newspaper has selected Clickshare as the payments vendor for its iPad app. The Virginian-Pilot, the flagship newspaper of Landmark Media Enterprises, has already deployed the system, which enables payments to flow directly from consumers to the publisher, eliminating the current wait for Apple to enable content subscriptions through its iTunes store.

“The main reason that we’re doing this is to make The Pilot available to other mediums,” said Danielle Rodier, The Pilot’s circulation marketing manager. “It’s really important for us to diversify how we get information out to the public.”

The new iPad tablet app has several advantages over other payments and subscription management systems: By eliminating the wait for Apple to enable content subscriptions through its iTunes store, it also eliminates any fees Apple may charge in that service; and, it provides the publisher direct access to customer data.

Besides this new service, Clickshare has been providing its online subscription management solution to the Virginian-Pilot since March of 2008, controlling access to its digital edition (PilotOnline) under a “Freemium” approach which allows print subscribers free access to premium content while charging web-only customers. Expanding on that history, The Virginian-Pilot is one of the first daily newspapers to use Apple’s popular tablet computer/e-reader as a platform to deliver content.

In addition to Landmark Media Enterprises, Clickshare’s clients include The New York Times Company, Crain Communications, The McClatchy Company, A.H. Belo, Journal Register Company, Sun-Times Media, the Rutland Herald and a number of independently-owned newspapers along with other websites, magazines and government entities.

With the addition of the Virginian-Pilot, the combined circulation of Clickshare-serviced newspapers, magazines and trade publications has now passed the 2 million mark, including 1.3 million in daily newspaper circulation and 775,000 in trade publications. In all, Clickshare has surpassed the 3-million mark for registered accounts.

Mobilizing its service tools, and responding to the needs of its clients during the last 15 years, Clickshare has implemented and provided all of the various options being considered by daily newspapers currently exploring paid content solutions, including metered access, variable-term subscriptions, per-item or “daypass” pricing, and ecommerce payments for merchandise sales.

Ultimately, the company envisions sharing of news and other content within a network of affiliated Clickshare-enabled websites, providing free or reduced rate access to registered customers, while charging for access to non-customers.

Clickshare’s suite of paid content tools allows publishers to control access to content based on:

  • user type (including geographic location, device in use or the affiliations or known attributes of the user);
  • content type (including premium content, email services, commenting rights or viewing a preview rather than a full content item);
  • payment type (content can be sold by subscription or per click, charged per event, by hours, day, week, month or year); or
  • bundled packages (publishers can sell content in bundled packages which can include print, web, mobile or tablet services).

Clickshare has integrated with numerous content management solutions including Saxotech Online, Olive Software, Tecnavia, DTI, Handmark and Drupal.

In order to grow their businesses in the new Internet era, daily newspapers have been exploring paid various approaches to and requirements for content solutions, including metered access, variable-term subscriptions, per-item or “daypass” pricing, and ecommerce payments for merchandise sales. All these capabilities are included in the current Clickshare platform:

  • Metered access – allows access to specific number of pages with gradual messages leading to registration and payment requests. Clickshare allows publishers to establish all of the threshold variables and parameters.
  • Subscriptions for any type of term (weekly, monthly, quarterly, etc.)
  • IP-number-based access control — this is designed to allow global access in enterprise solutions such as master subscriptions for businesses or colleges.
  • Multi-seat subscriptions — this allows master and subsidiary accounts for enterprise or family solutions
  • Automatic renewal option for credit card payments
  • Daypass pricing, or other limited-duration access
  • Token pack — redeemable tokens for day or article access
  • Free trials — limited-duration free access for registered customers
  • Special pricing for different customer categories , such as print, geographic, etc.
  • Newspapers In Education (NIE) access
  • Voluntary payments or donations, or membership models
  • Event registration and e-commerce payments for merchandise sales

About Clickshare

Clickshare Service Corp., based in Amherst, Massachusetts, has been providing user registration, authentication, access control and e-commerce services to web and print publishers for more than 10 years, registering over 3.3 million accounts.  Clickshare was formed in 1997, raised $2.9 million in equity capital through 2001, and has operated on revenues since. Shareholders include the University of Massachusetts, venture investors, PeopleSoft founder David Duffield and former publishing executives of the Los Angeles Times, Chicago Sun-Times, Chicago Reader and Philadelphia Inquirer. More information on Clickshare may be found at:  www.clickshare.com.

Clickshare awarded patent for four-party content transactions

Posted on: November 19th, 2010 by Bill Densmore No Comments

WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Clickshare Service Corp. was notified by the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office that it received a patent relating to its technology for creating a federated network of Internet web sites.

Clickshare has developed a unique system that networks web sites, allowing consumers to use existing accounts with trusted providers, to make secure, privacy-protected, purchases from any web site within the network. Consumers can make purchases from hundreds of vending websites without providing credit card-information to each site, using Clickshare’s Digital Calling Card (TM) technology. The consumer’s financial information resides with their trusted provider and the Clickshare Network settles payments among providers and vendors.

U.S. Patent No. 7,324,972 was awarded Jan. 29, 2008 for a “System for Management of Transactions on a Network: Four or More Parties.”

“Our technology gives consumers control over who sees personal information while simplifying the process of purchasing music, video, games and text across social and business networks,” said Rick Lerner, CEO.

The Clickshare System supports many models including traditional purchasing, B-to-B applications such as tracking and payment for advertising click-throughs, reliable exchange of consumer information, federated authentication and management of loyalty programs.

Clickshare has been providing services such as subscription management, “per-click” purchasing, event ticket sales and online print subscription capture for the newspaper and media industries for over 10 years. Its clients include Crain Communications Inc., the New York Times Co. (at Worcester, Mass.), The Sun Times Newspaper Group (Chicago Sun-Times and other papers), The McClatchy Co., Journal Register Co., as well as government agencies.

Clickshare Service Corp. is a privately-owned company based in Amherst, Mass. For more information, see http://www.clickshare.com.  (413) 253-7800.

Contacts
For Clickshare:
Edward Bride, 413-442-7718
Ed@edbride-pr.com

Permalink: http://www.businesswire.com/news/google/20071016005246/en/Clickshare-Receives-Notice-Allowance-U.S.-Patent-Technology.

Chicago Sun-Times launches integrated web-print subscription platform

Posted on: November 19th, 2010 by Bill Densmore No Comments

  The Chicago Sun-Times, one of the largest U.S. dailies, launched a paid electronic edition that allows print customers unrestricted access using the subscription-management platform of Clickshare Service Corp. Clickshare also handles the web capture and processing of print subscriptions.

Clickshare is a leading provider of online subscription-management, card-processing and web access-control, serving the newspaper industry and B2B publications for over 10 years.

“We chose Clickshare for our electronic edition because we wanted to give our print customers the added benefit of our E-edition while increasing our paid circulation,” said John Cary, senior director of online operations for the Sun-Times. “Clickshare provides the best content-control solution in terms of simplicity and stability as well as flexibility for the long term.”

“The Sun-Times Newspaper Group is pursuing a series of innovations in serving multi-platform users which will set an example for the newspaper industry,” said Richard Lerner, Clickshare’s president. “We’re committed to enabling that innovation at the Sun-Times and its sister newspapers.”  (July 31, 2007) # # # #

Contacts:
Clickshare
Greg Smith, 413-458-7000 ext 102
gsmith@clickshare.com