The New York Times
will introduce two new digital subscription offers as part of a tiered subscription plan beginning April 2, along with a number of other new features in its existing digital
packages, as well as a new native ad product for mobile. The new digital sub options should help the NYT
recruit more subscribers with lower prices for access to basic content.
The low-price digital sub option, NYT Now, costs $8 for four weeks of access and gives subscribers access to the new NYT Now App for iPhone and iPod Touch. NYT Now will also be available for free to
existing digital and home delivery subscribers.
The NYT Now sub includes access to a curated collection of the most important NYT
content, including videos, infographics and
slide shows, as well as content from around the Web. The information appears in a continuously updated News stream, where the user can click on summaries to go to full stories.
also offers a “Morning Briefing” and an “Evening Briefing,” summarizing events in top news categories, as well as “Our Picks,” presenting content from other sites.
All content can be shared via Facebook, Twitter, and email.
At the other end of the spectrum, Times Premier, costing $45 for every four weeks, offers the most engaged NYT
readers expanded content offerings including the “Times Insider,” which provides a behind-the-scenes look at how the newsroom creates content. Subscribers will also receive exclusive
access to TimesTalks, consisting of new and archived videos of Times journalists interviewing important figures from all walks of life; two TBooks per month, offering compilations of articles from the
archives devoted to a single subject; and a number of other features including crosswords, family access, and gift subscriptions.
Existing home delivery subscribers can get access to Times
Premier for an extra $10 every four weeks.
On the advertising side, the NYT
is also introducing a new in-line native ad product, Paid Posts, which will begin appearing on NYT
Now before extending to the newspaper’s main news app for iPhone, iPod Touch and the mobile Web site. Paid Posts should begin appearing on the NYT’s other smartphone and tablet apps later
this year. The NYT
emphasized that Paid Posts will be the only form of advertising on NYT Now; Cartier is the launch sponsor.
NYTCO CEO Mark Thompson explained: “Our
goal with this next phase of our paid products strategy is to satisfy the demand for Times
journalism by giving new subscribers the ability to choose the amount of access they desire at a
price point that suits them, and to enhance the value we offer our current loyal subscribers.”
The new subscription offerings and Paid Posts native ad product come as NYTCO
struggles to sustain growth in digital ad and circulation revenues. In the fourth quarter of 2013, NYTCO’s total ad revenues fell 6.3% from $226.5 million to $212.1 million, while circ revenues
slid 3.9% from $216.1 million to $207.7 million. Where the company added 234,000 new digital subscribers in 2012, that number slumped to 120,000 additional subscribers in 2013.