|Subscription Newsletter Fatigue? Think Again|
|Alex Kantrowitz, writer of the Big Technology Newsletter and the book ALWAYS DAY ONE: How The Tech Titans Plan To Stay On Top Forever, said that the rumblings of newsletter fatigue are mere rumblings. In fact, he believes the opposite is taking place and he dubs it the “Newsletter Network Effect.”
“Just like each member of a social network makes the network more valuable, every additional newsletter writer makes reading news and analysis in the inbox more commonplace by introducing the behavior to new audiences. This phenomenon has paved the way for more independent writers to make a living, and it’s also shifting resources in larger media companies toward email.”
Consider that major media outlets like The New York Times, Puck, and Vox are all doubling down on newsletter subs — and even Twitter is getting in on the game.
|Newsletter content is valuable content. Readers trust the sites they get their news from so they’re more willing, or more likely, to subscribe to newsletters being offered.
This is where publishers have an advantage. “Everyone understands that email will be the key to Identity in a first-party world,” Kerel Cooper, CMO of Liveintent told AdMonsters. “What these new entrants understand is the sheer superpower of the email address and they are developing strategies to be more dexterous with it.”
Native ads are becoming the bridge to help pubs monetize newsletters and offer readers valuable content and advertisers more bang for their buck.
“With native ads in email newsletters, publishers can transform their newsletters into a channel for first-party data collection,” Nick Bolt, Senior Product Marketing Manager, Publisher Solutions, LiveIntent, told AdMonsters. “With more premium options, publishers can attract a larger array of advertisers and acquire more data to continue growing their business and revenue.”
|Half of U.S. Consumers Prefer AVOD|
|Consumers don’t always hate advertising. When it’s relevant, it’s a plus; when it saves consumers money, they run towards it.
Two recent reports, one from Future Today and one from Roku show that consumers love AVOD content, including the ads, because they don’t have to pay much for subscriptions with free ad-supported TV.
Future Today found that “50.6% of U.S. consumers prefer using ad-supported video (AVOD) services to reduce or eliminate subscription fees. Similarly, viewers find the ads shown while streaming are considerably more relevant to their interests compared to those shown on traditional cable or broadcast television.”
|Ads are not the enemy. They never have been. Consumers want relevance, ads that will show them products and services that will make their life easier or provide benefits. They also want to feel like they are scoring a deal and putting money back in their pockets, and AVOD does that.
“Despite some pundits’ expectations, we’re seeing AVOD adoption flourish, and expect this trend will continue to grow for years to come,” said Vikrant Mathur, CEO and Co-Founder of Future Today. “Our research solidifies that with the right viewing experience, the ad-supported streaming model is ideal for content owners, brands, and, most importantly, audiences.”
Roku found that “some seven in 10 of those surveyed were willing to pay for an AVOD service if it resulted in a lower monthly cost, while over eight in 10 said the offer of free and paid subscription tiers was crucial in swaying their decision.”
While subscription fatigue may be happening in CTV, advertising is still a very fragmented market.
“TDG Research discovered that in Q2, YouTube generated as much ad revenue as Netflix did subscription revenue. Among free ad-supported streaming-TV providers (FASTs), Pluto TV leads, followed by Tubi TV. Fox’s Xumo, in contrast, has usage in the single digits.”
But here’s the big BUT.
“However, asked about the role of free ad-supported streaming services within their households’ total TV viewing, just one in eight Pluto and Tubi users say they use these services as their first choice for shows. Attributed to ‘widespread confusion about the meaning of AVOD and its variations.”
There’s still a lot of work to be done to properly explain CTV, AVOD, etc. to consumers and avoid further confusion. But maybe there's a morsel of a lesson in all of this for the HBO Max's, Disney+'s and other streamers of their ilk.