I like to read a newspaper just as much as the next person. But I also take in news all day long from so many sources I can’t even count. Nor do I have to. Just today, I was intrigued by the buzz story in the Wall Street Journal about Apple’s ITunes considering a move to the web.
But when I went to the WSJ site they demanded I pay them to read the story. Now, if I read the WSJ regularly online I probably would already be a subscriber. In fact, I do subscribe to several online publications. They never demanded that I do it though.
So what did I do? I went back to Google and queried it for “ITunes on the web”. There was the WSJ link at the top of the page. But Mashable had a take on the same news and there was Reality Check and Huffington Post and all the usual pundits. When I clicked on the blog search button I backfilled with more info about the subject. I even viewed a free video about it!
I will not be bullied on the web. After all its my space not the Wall Street Journal’s. But what’s a dinosaur to do? Everyone has always paid dearly to have one association or another with them. It’s not my fault that they lack the creativity to come up with a new workable plan. It’s remarkable to watch businesses large and small get caught up in the sea change.
I just have to wonder how I might have reacted if the story in the WSJ was really, really good and they just let me read it. What if a banner at the end of the story said, “If this article read was important to you click here”, and in so doing I was swept away to an offer page that made me feel like I was an important business reader. How hard would that be to do ? What would the potential be to convert new business after everyone who was going to subscribe to you already had?
Sorry folks there really is no place in the market for relationships that are not win-win anymore. Those days are fully over. Think about your promotions. Are you doing them because you have to and this is how we’ve always done it? Or are you doing it to cause new business to come from a different angle than you are already getting it from?