Innovation That Matters

Instead of blogs, email newsletters by paid subscription

Publishing & Media

Blogs are now so ubiquitous and the internet so vast that the information communicated in them loses its value the minute it’s published. So, at least, believes founder Sam Lessin, who recently created to launch — or, perhaps, relaunch — the subscription email newsletter as a new, premium alternative. Billed as “the simple way to sell email subscription newsletters,” allows those with something to say to communicate it in a directed, private way to those who pay to hear it. Users begin by creating a free seller account. From there they create the name of their information “product,” receive a unique URL and set a price per month. They can also connect their Facebook account to post the subject lines of their letters as status updates, or a Twitter account to tweet them. Either way, interested readers can then subscribe to the email newsletter at the associated URL and pay through Amazon. Newsletters can be published as frequently as the user chooses, and subscribers can reply privately with comments. Users can unsubscribe readers at will, and they can also give away free subscriptions to those of their choice. When they’re ready to collect their earnings, New York-based offers a simple way to “cash out.” Lessin explains: “Delivering information to the inboxes of people I truly respect means that I can’t get away with half truths/linguistic games. I need to truly believe what I say before I hit send.” At the other end, meanwhile, “anyone I don’t know is free to signal real commitment to think about/comment back by paying. No slackers allowed.” There are currently some 500 subscription newsletters in publication, most ranging from USD 1.99 to USD 4.00 per month. One to try out as a revenue-generating alternative to your information-rich blog…?



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