9 Ways Magazines Make Money with Email

by Tim D'Avis Second Street

Direct Revenue

The simplest – and in many aspects best – way to increase your revenue is to increase your subscriptions, grow your event attendance, and boost your ecommerce and merchandise sales. Direct revenue from direct relationships is more strategically aligned than indirect revenue from direct relationships. Email is the number one driver of conversions and your best ally to achieve these goals. Create a robust email campaign for each of your direct revenue initiatives.

Website Referral Traffic

You’ve got a lot of great content on your site, and you’re likely already generating revenue based on ad positions on those website pages. This means the more people you can drive to your content directly attributes to more money for your magazine. Email is the number one way to direct readers to your content. Not sure what to send? Here’s a list of email ideas to get started.

Sponsorship Packages

Whether your magazine is online-only or print and digital, you’ve got a ton of sponsorship opportunities to offer. Increase your sponsorship revenue when you create bundled sponsorship packages with prominent placement across every aspect of your brand – website ads, print ads, email ads, etc. On top of that, lock these in as multi-month contracts to save your sales team time and drive even more annual revenue.

Birthday & Anniversary Emails

Birthday and anniversary emails are a win-win-win for advertisers, audiences, and radio stations. They make excellent re-engagement campaigns for disengaged users in your database and build your brand’s relationship with your audience. Plus, when you sell sponsorships, these can be major revenue drivers. Encourage participating advertisers to include a coupon or offer for their business – who doesn’t love a special treat on their birthday or anniversary?

Promotion Follow-Up Email Campaigns

Your relationship with an advertiser shouldn’t end the day the contest ends. Creating follow-up drip campaigns based on opt-ins and answers to lead-gen questions gives you additional opportunities to qualify entrants and engage prospects. Come up with a flat rate pricing for these follow-up email drip campaigns to offer in addition to your promotions sponsorship package.

Branded Content Emails

For magazines running branded content (or if you’re considering getting started,) email is a critical piece of your initiative. A lot of time and energy goes into creating a great piece of branded content, but it doesn’t work if no one consumes it. Leverage your database as a branded content distribution channel and set a flat rate floor with a CPM at scale – a pricing format with a minimum cost with the built-in ability to charge more if the audience is larger.

Email Ad Networks

While selling your own email ad sponsorships gives you total control, there are numerous ad networks eager to work with you as well. Working with an ad network has a lot of benefits. It’s a passive revenue stream, they’re designed for multiple formats, and they specialize in email ad serving. This is a fantastic example of a ‘set it and forget it’ revenue steam.

Email-Based Retargeting

Many companies such as Facebook and LiveRamp are eager to identify potential consumers based on their interest behavior. Whether you upload an encrypted list of a targeted audience or include an embedded tracking pixel in your emails, advertisers will be able to generate unique display ads based on which emails they open or click. This is a great way for your media company to extend a sale or follow-up after a mid-funnel conversion.

Segmented Partner Offers

While broadcasting an advertiser’s message to your entire database is rarely – if ever – a good idea, there are times when sending out a partner offer to a small, segmented audience can be valuable. Whether it’s based on targeting like zipcode, information you learned through surveys, or even how a specific user voted in your Readers’ Choice ballot, leverage your robust data to create a small, but highly interested, list.

When it comes to making more money, your magazine has a lot of options. Make sure you put email on your list of revenue tactics.

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