Time Inc. Launches Maghound
In an effort to "bring magazines more on par with music, DVD's, cable TV and satellite radio," according to Maghound Enterprises President Dave Ventresca, Time Inc. this week launched its new online-based magazine membership service. Maghound flips the conventional magazine-subscription model and grants flexibility and control to the consumer.
Members of the beta version of Maghound can select up to 15 consumer magazines from a broad range of titles for one set monthly fee, with the ability to trade in and out of subscriptions without limitation.
"While magazine circulation is strong, there is a need for new and innovative ways to reach consumers, particularly online," said John Squires, executive vice president of Time Inc., the parent company of Maghound. "Maghound is a novel approach that begins with the consumer's needs, provides them with unlimited choices and delivers highly engaged readers to advertisers. It's an idea that will be a winner for consumers, publishers and readers.
In addition to making all of its own U.S.-based titles available via the service, Time Inc. has hammered out deals with dozens of leading publishers and, as of Friday, nearly 240 consumer magazines were available through Maghound. Ventresca says Maghound will pay publishers a fixed fee for every copy of each title that is sold, and that this fee is agreed to on a title-by-title basis.
Membership pricing is tiered on four levels -- three titles for $4.95 per month, five titles for $7.95, seven titles for $9.95, and $1 per title for eight titles or more. Members can manage their subscriptions entirely online (or by e-mail or phone), from changing the titles they receive to changing their address and even placing a hold on delivery of the titles. There is no such thing as a renewal with Maghound, as members are only making month-to-month commitments to the titles they select.
Ventresca says Maghound will continue to partner with other publishers to increase the number of titles available to members, and that a number of enhancements to the site are planned for early 2009.
Editor's note: For more on Maghound's launch, see this week's Inbox Interview with Maghound President Dave Ventresca.