Revolutionising Paywall Subscriptions On Online Platforms

We are living in an era of digital metamorphosis. The trigger for this digital phenomenon has been the swift adaption and unceasing evolution of the World Wide Web. We have seen it evolve, and with it, there has been a surge of new technologies to make the best use of its capabilities. From hardware (desktops, laptops, smartphones, tablets) to new software (blogs, websites, social networks), our online activity has reshaped the way we create, communicate and consume.

We Create

Everything we use today has come to life and been refined thanks to an intense creative process, allowing us to shift from a non-digital society (print publishing, canvas painting, debating) to an increasingly digital one (online newspapers/books, online tracks of our favourite artists, digital painting, audio-visual debates on TV/YouTube/Facebook).

An increasing array of mobile digital gadgets such as tablets, smartphones, laptops and apps have allowed consumers to create and share content on the move. For an organisation, this meant various things:

  • The shift from the static web 1.0 toward web 2.0 has forced companies to adapt to the new digital environment. Businesses had to become more flexible, more transparent, meaningfully engaged in an online relationship with their consumers, to improve both revenue and brand reputation.
  • On the other hand, companies failing to provide the right experience for their customers lost reputation, revenues and in the worst case faced bankruptcy.  The new interactive web proved that no one is too big to fail.

The only way for companies to survive and thrive relies on a straightforward concept: keeping abreast with technological advances and then being able to utilise these technologies to create a unique user experience and a sense of meaningful brand engagement and growth.

Those who would not or could not update their business model to suit their digitally savvy audiences have experienced what has been referred to as Digital Darwinism, as consumer behaviour and the technology they used evolved faster than their ability to adapt.

We Consume

The advent of the web has created a very informed audience who demand a much more meaningful experience from their brand. From big corporations to governments, everyone had to adapt to the online behaviour of their public.

The media industry, in particular, the music sector, has seen this as an opportunity to create a stronger, more engaged fan database.  The creative industries have seen the potential of social networks in creating a more engaged audience, which as a sign of respect and in support of their favourite artist, would pay via various online platforms such as iTunes, Spotify, Radio.

The music world has not been the only one benefiting from this digital revolution. Broadcasters, whether they are TV or Radio, have experienced an even more significant economic benefit from an engaged audience.  This media sector has widely benefited from apps (Sky Go, BBC Weather, BBC Sport, Sky+, TuneIn Radio, Radio player) for mobile gadgets, which have made TV and Radio seem ubiquitous while digital monetisation strategies, such as subscription models (Sky TV packages), helped them leverage their revenues.

For the press, this has raised both challenges and opportunities: an increasingly mobile society has triggered a positive ascent in online readership and a fall in print news readership. The result meant that the entire publishing industry had to rethink not only their business model, shifting their business and print mentality to a more digital one more in line with their consumers.

The Wall-Street Journal and the New York Times are examples of two early adopters of paywall solutions. The belief underlying this decision was that if our consumers pay offline (for print products) why shouldn’t they pay online (for the digital experience)?

You often hear The New York Times is a special case, but we make more money off consumers than we do advertising. That’s a moment – New York Times correspondent, David Carr

We Communicate

Technology is a game changer, and at Evolok we can upgrade your business to an entirely new digital platform so that you can communicate and engage with your audience to create a more engaging user experience while increasing revenues through both paid content and advertising CPM.

How better starting this than with understanding your audience, what they like, and how you could better tailor your products to meet their needs?

For this reason, we created the Evolok product suite. While it carries out advanced Access and Identity Management functions, the suite will help you better understand your audience behaviour. With all this known, it helps you identify areas of your online strategy, which require improvement and refine your marketing campaign based on user data acquired in real time. The overall effect will be a more efficient, better designed and appropriately targeted marketing campaign. Supporting this is the Social Sign On feature, which makes the user experience more engaging while streamlining the registration data entry process while providing you with valuable consumer’s social metadata.

Our module is designed to provide a flexible paywall for use in a digital monetisation strategy within any industry, be it publishing, broadcasting or e-commerce, while also providing non-technical staff with the ability to rapidly configure and adjust their paywall based on analytics data, breaking stories or strategically advantageous events. With an advanced and customisable ruleset, you can quickly set rules regarding:

  • How many free articles do I allow my readers to access monthly?
  • How long is the free trial period before encouraging an anonymous user to become a registered user?
  • What are the expiration conditions/package limits for different realms of users?
  • Do I want my anonymous user to register or do I want him to pay for the services I offer after the free trial version?
  • What if I need to change my subscription policy?

If you already have a subscription or identity management platform in place, our consultancy team offers optimisation for existing systems so that you can better control access management for paywalls, streamline your registration/subscription process and improve the profiling of your users based on their information which you could acquire through a single and social sign on.

Since its initial launch, Evolok has helped a host of commercial, publishing and broadcasting media clients become innovative in a way that is beneficial for them and their customers, solidifying their reputation as digital business leaders.

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