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In episode 59 of the Customers Who Click podcast, I had a fantastic time chatting to Dan Burcaw about subscriptions.
We’re seeing subscriptions pop-up everywhere for everything these days, from everyday household items, to self-care products, magazines, newspapers, music, video, sports; there isn’t much that can’t be covered by a subscription.
And do you know what, people love the convenience. But because there’s so many of them out there, subscriptions brands are having trouble with converting, engaging, and retaining those customers. The minute the customer feels as though they’re not getting enough value, they’re off, browsing through your competitors.
Value is the key component of any successful business but even more so in the DTC subscription space. If you can convince the customer that not only is your product valuable and right for them, but your business is as well, you my friend, have won yourself a loyal customer.
Dan is the Co-Founder & CEO at Nami ML, the smartest service to help brands launch, scale, and optimize their mobile app subscription business. He calls himself a serial entrepreneur, having co-founded three other successful startups before Nami ML (one of them was acquired by the Oracle Marketing Cloud, where he also served as Co-Founder & CEO.) You can connect with him on LinkedIn, Twitter or head over to https://www.namiml.com/.
02:23 - 22:13 - How Subscriptions Developed Over the Years and Where They’re at Today- Subscriptions have been around for a really long time - think magazines and newspapers; you could even think about rent or mortgage payments as a form of a subscription. Pretty much anything can become a subscription today, given it delivers value to the customers. Even if your product has always been geared up for one-time purchases at a high price point, you could make it more accessible to less frequent users by offering on a pay-monthly basis.
22:25 - 28:50 - Key Tips For Brands Looking to Introduce the Subscription Model - Show the value that comes from subscribing to your product before asking for a commitment upfront. Free trials don’t work for every industry, and discounts alone aren’t enough to convince people to subscribe and stay subscribed, but people need to see clearly what they’re paying for. Another great tip is to introduce an element of surprise and delight - subscriptions can become repetitive after a while and once the customer is bored, they churn.
29:40 - 34:26 - Common Mistakes Brands Make with Subscriptions - Brands blindly copying what their competitors are doing, without giving it an ounce of thought. How do you know it’s working for them? If it is, do you know why? Plus, let’s be honest, you’ll never build anything of value if you’re constantly trying to be like someone else because there are probably 10 other subscription brands trying to do the exact same thing.
34:44 - 43:25 - Upcoming Trends in Subscription Models - The so called “subscription fatigue” is massively overplayed in the media. With the rise of easy-cancel digital subscriptions, if the product no longer serves the customer, they’ll simply cancel it - it’s that simple. Another one could be the rise of local subscriptions (so your online yoga or gym memberships), but this trend will soon be verified as the lockdowns are slowly lifting and people can finally experience these things in-person. Also, hire a freelancer as and when needed might see more interest soon (think Fiverr or UpWork).
43:37 - 47:42 - Dan’s Marketing Pet Peeves - Lack of contextual personalisation. The tools enabling great level personalisations exist. There’s no excuse NOT to personalise the experience at every touchpoint, and yet, most brands never even bother trying them.