Who is interested in investing in a new subscription SaaS platform for digital AND print products?

229 viewsFundingfunding saas subscriptions
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After going through an RFP in 2021, and implementing a new subscription platform at our company, that took nearly 8 months to migrate to, I found that there are not many cutting-edge subscription platforms that are handling digital (website, newsletter, podcasts, etc.) and print (magazines, books, etc.), along with other physical products (subscription boxes). Most of them are mainly setup for only handling digital subscriptions. And, several of them are platform-specific, such as a WordPress plugin.

Here’s the methodology:

  • Authentication via JavaScript
  • Gated content based on content tags – Premium, Subscribe, Free, etc.
  • Digital content subscription – time-based
    • Paid and free subscribers
  • Print magazine subscription – shipment-based
    • Paid and controlled circulation
  • Combination subscription – print & digital – time or shipment-based
  • Newsletter subscription – shipment or time-based
    • Paid and free options
  • Subscription boxes – shipment-based
  • Activity and analytics on user behavior on sites
  • Integrations
    • Templates within platform
      • User created
      • Subscription started
      • Subscription coming up for renewal – annual renewals/self-pay
      • Subscription renews
        • Flag for users to select for monthly receipt email
        • Automatically sent for annual subscribers
      • Password reset
      • Set password – users added to system without password
      • Credit card expiration notice
      • Credit card charge failed
      • Group/corporate user created
      • Open invoice – non-auto-renewals
    • Email providers
      • SendGrid – template based
      • SMTP services – Mailgun, SendGrid, etc
      • Marketo – trigger variables
      • MailChimp
      • Sailthru
      • Active Campaign
    • CRMs
      • HubSpot
      • Salesforce
    • CMSs (in theory, shouldn’t have to have a specific module per CMS, as it should be able to drop-in via JS SDK)
      • WordPress
      • Drupal
    • API available for custom applications
    • Binary file permissions – PDF downloads
    • Google Analytics
  • Google Tag Manager
    • CDP integrations
      • Treasure Data
      • Lytics
      • Adobe
  • Walls
    • HTML templates – updatable by client
    • A/B option for different options
    • Paywall
      • Metered amount of free articles before seeing paywall
    • Registration wall
      • Requires login to view – based on tags
    • Products
      • Top-level products
      • Plans associated to each product, allowing for customized pricing, plan length, etc.
  • Coupons
    • Allow for promotional codes to be used to have discounts and offers associated to plans
  • Lead generation forms
  • Payments
    • Stripe
    • PayPal
    • Chargebee
    • Checks via lockbox
  • Access management
    • Single subscribers
    • Groups
    • Corporate licences
    • Set start and expire dates
    • Autorenew
      • Monthly
      • Annually
    • Self renew
      • Receive email with payment link
    • Import users
      • Customer information
      • Credentials from old system – hashed passwords
      • Previous subscription information
      • Credit card numbers – imported to payment provider
    • Export customers
      • Active
      • Expired
      • Canceled
    • Export activity
    • Issue splits (Print magazines)
      • Periodical classifications structured properly for Paid vs Controlled circulation
      • Export Mail.DAT file
  • Payments
    • Create payments and charge credit cards
      • Single subscribers
      • Group subscriptions
    • Create invoices
    • Refund payments
    • Save credit cards for continued processing
  • Accounting
    • Show on dashboard and Export revenue information
      • Subscription revenue by month
      • Accounts received
      • Open invoices
      • Past due invoices
      • Payment history
      • New customers
      • Active subscribers
      • Active corporate licences
      • Corporate license revenue by Company
        • Percentage/amount change compared to previous period
  • Admin Panel
    • User administration
      • Staff Roles
        • Administrator – full access
        • Sales representative – access to create customers, start/stop subscriptions, create coupons/discounts (administrator can set floor price), charge a card for a sale
        • Customer support – access to create customers, start/stop subscriptions, create coupons/discounts (administrator can set floor price), charge a card for a sale export records and reports, help clients with support issues
        • Accounting/Finance – access to review all financial records, export records and reports
      • Customer roles
        • Admin – company/group account representative
        • User
  • Services
    • Support
      • Phone and chat support for companies using the platform
        • Different tiers of support with different pricing models
          • Platinum – 24×7 phone/chat/email support
          • Gold – chat/email support
          • Silver – email support
    • Custom Development
  • Customization
    • Add custom fields to customer creation
    • Add custom fields for demographic and firm-graphic information

Revenue

  • Charge percentage fee per subscriber – platform fee
    • 1 to 5,000 – 5% of subscription fee
    • 5,001 – 10,001 – 4% of subscription fee
    • 10,001+ – 2% of subscription fee
      • OR
    • Monthly platform fee + % transaction fee
      • Starter plan – $0/mth + 10% transaction fee
      • Professional plan – $25/mth + 4.9% transaction fee
      • Enterprise plan – $100/mth + 4.9% transaction fee
  • Support service for clients
  • Custom development
  • Setup fee
    • Migration support
    • Implementation into CMS
    • Integration support
Mark Chiles Posted new comment January 2, 2023

As in a platform that capably produces magazine (or some other print format) based on digital content?

Hi Paul,

It would be more for the management and circulation operations of print and digital products, with the ability to connect to a Printer to ship the magazines to paying subscribers. Most platforms are only focused on time-based digital subscription fulfillment, not working with subscription businesses that have print products that are shipment-based. Both are still extremely prevalent for B2B media businesses.

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