Publications are Requiring Subscriptions. Your Blog is More Important Than Ever.
I was researching a subject for a client and clicked on a Forbes article. For the first time, I was required to subscribe before accessing the content.
First, I hope this means that Forbes is about to get rid of all their pop ups and ads because I rarely share their articles anymore; all that activity gives me a headache.
But it made me realize that more and more publications are going this route, which means that good, free content is going to be harder to come by.
And that means there's an opportunity for the value-driven blogger.
It's not that I don't understand the predicament these websites are in - they need to pay their staff and operating costs and now that hardcopy publications are going away...they have to make money somewhere.
But on behalf of the average reader...I'm not going to have 50 different subscriptions just so I can get a little info.
There will always be publications that make sense to subscribe to; I know plenty of people who regularly read the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal.
However, many times I just need information about one specific topic and that's not worth paying a monthly subscription fee.
Here's another issue with the subscription model.
I work with a lot of financial advisors and while we focus on highlighting their custom content, we also like to mix in some outside resources as well. And even when we ARE working on the custom content, we'll often connect live links to articles/quotes that support what we're saying.
Recently, I've had social media posts kicked back because of the subscription issue; compliance doesn't want us to promote articles that people have to pay for. And I get that - I don't want to send people to an article they can't even access.
Take advantage of this opportunity.
If you haven't already started creating your own content, now is the time to start. I'm already linking articles from other smaller companies in my clients' blogs because I know it will be accepted, rather than linking to larger publications.
From a digital marketing standpoint, I recommend the following:
Make sure your post has an image and that it will format well when you post it to social media. I'll pass you by if, when I put the link in Buffer or a social media platform, it looks strange.
As ALWAYS, create valuable content that people will want to share. You never know if it's someone like me tying your blog into something I've written. Hey, traffic is traffic and I'm giving you credit free advertising.
Make sure your pieces aren't too long and they're READABLE. By that I mean, use headers that will make skimming through and finding what we're looking for even easier. Bullet point small lists - again to make it skimmable. Bold sentences that make valuable points.