Hope you’ve been enjoying your free Research Intelligencer trial. We’ve been enjoying publishing it. As you can probably tell by now, our main focus is on uncovering the best research, data and analysis explaining the values exchanged in advertising, media and marketing.
Sometimes we do that by simply reporting on what other people tell us. Sometimes, we do it by working directly with the best sources of industry intelligence -- people like PQ Media’s Patrick Quinn and Leo Kivijarv or Publicis Groupe’s Rishad Tobaccowala. And sometimes, as you’ll see elsewhere in today’s edition, we do it by partnering with others to create new, original research to answer previously unanswered questions.
One of those partners is Pollfish, an innovative platform enabling users to scale quick, high-quality surveys by engaging nearly half a billion app users worldwide. Thanks to Pollfish, we’ll deploy at least one original survey each week, and more when the news cycle merits it.
As someone who has covered the industry’s research intelligencers for more nearly four decades, I know as well as any journalist about the pitfalls of reporting on research, and the methodological debates that ensue. Toward that end, I’d like to point you back to the boilerplate on the bottom of every edition we publish, and remind you that we are journalists reporting on research and data that we believe tells important stories that provide valuable intel to our readers.
If you want to debate methodology, criticize research quality, or grouse on our analysis, interpretation and reporting, have at it. We welcome your comments on every story, and for any of you who want to step up to the plate and write your own analysis, commentary, or even publish your original research, we welcome that too. In fact, we’re counting on the fact that many of you will, mainly because you know you’ll reach other intelligencers.
Sticking with the theme of value exchange, this seems like an appropriate time to explain a little more about how we plan to exchange our value with you. Journalism ain’t cheap. Publisher, advisor and occasional friend of MediaPost Shelly Palmer once quipped the best line I ever heard to explain the economics of media during a MediaPost event more than a decade ago: “I pay, you pay, or someone else pays. But somebody has to pay for media.”
As we reported in Friday’s and today’s editions, the ad industry -- indirectly or directly -- pays considerable sums to reach, engage and influence consumers. Depending on how you calculate it, it’s somewhere between $1 per hour of ad-supported content to about $3 per hour of pure advertising time.
Keeping that value in mind, we think the price we’re asking to keep you informed about things like that is a fair price to pay. Actually, it's an incredible deal. When we first published our annual subscription rate of $495, some readers groused it was too high. Well, as Palmer rightfully noted, somebody has to pay for media.For the 20+ years MediaPost has published, that somebody has been the “supply-side,” technology vendors, media suppliers and other services providers who purchased display advertising or other forms of sponsorship in order to provide our content free to the rest of our readers -- mostly the "demand-side."
Well, we're going to extend that model to a subscription revenue model, because Research Intelligencer has no advertising -- just pure, unadulterated intel.
Here's how it works: If you qualify as a bona fide “demand-sider” -- someone at an advertiser or agency who controls media budgets -- you will be able to subscribe by exchanging a little information about yourself. All others will need to pay cash.
If $495 seems like a lot for you to pay, consider two things. One -- many of your partners on the demand-side, including some of your most valuable customers or prospects, will be getting the intel we publish daily, thanks directly or indirectly to people like you who are paying for their subscriptions. Aside from being their benefactor, do you really want to be out of the loop on what your customers know?
For the second point, let me break the value exchange down in terms similar to what we've been reporting on the past couple of editions: the value of people’s time. If the marketplace intel we publish seems pricey at $495 per year, what about $1.95 daily? Or do you need me to compute the hourly rate?