May 25, 2013

I love elephant! But I don’t value it at all!

We get hardly any complaints about our ground-breaking, new media sustainability creating subscription innovation, which we launched before the NY Times launched theirs. They spent $40 million plus on theirs, and we, without their model to guide us, innovated ours for…well, just about nothing. Our “paygate” was held together with volunteer love, duct tape, shoe laces and spit.

But once in awhile we get a new reader who loves elephant but doesn’t value elephant.

Here’s one such:

Why do I have to pay to read this now? You have advertisers. Why should I follow you on FB if I have to pay to read your posts? I’ll give it a few days and see if you stick with this new format. If so, I am gone.

My answer:

Linda, we explain on the page you clicked off of, but I’m happy to answer your questions.

It’s not new, first of all, it’s been for a few years and it’s the reason we’re in business.

I can tell you as a publisher that, behind the scenes, your favorite sites and media do deals for big dollars. We don’t. We work with small, mindful sponsors. That’s worth $1/month, no? No? Not $1? How can you be simultaneously mad at losing something and not value it at all?

Thirdly, we’re independent. That means we are dependent on our readers–and remember, readers have paid for media they care about for centuries—centuries.

Still not convinced? No problem. You get three free clicks a day, enough for 95% of our readers—which is why you probably never noticed our “paygate” until now. Not enough? Want more, but still don’t want to spend $1/month?

No problem: subscribe, free, to our best of the week newsletter: http://www.elephantjournal.com/join-the-cause

Linda: the best of the week newsletter has 10 to 15 articles and all are free for you.

Update: Linda’s response:

Guess I never clicked on enough of your links to get the message. I went back a week in your posts now to see what I have clicked on and only found one article. So, it must be a limit of one a week? Not worth following then. I won’t sign up for your email news. I have to spend too much time already deleting spam email. I am looking to eliminate, not add.

My reply:

Not sure why you’re complaining, then. You want free, but you already have too much. We’re offering free, and you’re mad not to get it free, but once we take the time to make clear you don’t want it.

Our Daily Wake-Up Call, our daily newsletter, is a quote of inspiration or meaning each morning–we bill it as a gap in your busy inbox. So maybe that’s the one for you. http://www.elephantjournal.com/join-the-cause

For more: join Conscious Consumerism.

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