Are Your Digital Editions Making Money?
19. Track interactivity. Do more subscribers renew when digital editions are more interactive? What do readers zoom in on and which interactive features do they respond to? Ask your digital editions provider, who may be tracking such responses across their stable of magazines, these questions. At the very least, analyze what readers are doing within your issues, such as which actions led to supplemental product purchases or buys on an advertiser's website, Mullen says.
20. Explore cross-publication advertising options. Several digital editions vendors offer the opportunity to run ads across several clients' publications. In February, automaker Kia ran a digital campaign across 45 publications through Zinio's new cross-publisher ad network, Zpan. Mullen says VivMag's ads linked to the Macy's catalog also are shared across the network. Digital editions provider Texterity can place ads within the user interface around a digital edition, either as a banner ad or below the table of contents, allowing ads to be shared between publications via the interface.
21. Explore various subscription options. After years of offering a $36 annual subscription, VivMag last year repositioned subscription sales as memberships, including access to "hidden" website pages and networking events. In response to the growing mobile device market, VivMag also launched a monthly subscription option—and saw subscription rates increase dramatically.
22. When looking to monetize, nothing is too small. VivMag is experimenting with "marketplace" style ads as a low-cost way for advertisers to try digital editions and is running affiliate links with retailer Amazon to encourage impulse buys while reading an article about, say, wine. (VivMag gets a small percentage of each sale.)
Drew Onufer, Director, Interactive Publishing, National Geographic Global Media (NationalGeographic.com)
National Geographic launched an interactive digital edition in March, and its April "water" issue has proven popular on the iPad.