Subscription Stories: True Tales from the Trenches

Subscription models are crazy powerful. Savvy small companies can easily deploy them to knock huge Goliaths off kilter. We’ve seen it in entertainment, software, hardware, news, retail, hospitality—the list goes on. In her podcast series, ...more

Latest Episodes

40

February 09, 2022 00:32:19
Episode Cover

Using Subscriptions to Democratize Healthcare with Matthew Mengerink, CTO of Thirty Madison

Nearly every industry can benefit from joining the Membership Economy, and most industries have great examples of subscription-based organizations. One of the slowest movers has been the healthcare industry and for good reason. There's so much complexity to delivering health outcomes—as well as great risk. And that's why I'm so excited about this episode of Subscription Stories. Today's guest, Matthew Mengerink, is the Chief Technology Officer at Thirty Madison. The company describes itself as "the human-first health company bringing specialized care and treatment to everyone." One by one, they are tackling some of the most challenging chronic health issues, like allergies, migraines, and hair loss, using a combination of digital and real-world services through "forever transactions" with the people they serve. In this conversation, Matthew and I talk about Thirty Madison's uniquely scalable approach to healthcare, the challenges of balancing personalization with systems and protocols, and what subscriptions might mean for the future of medicine.  Love the show? Subscribe, rate, review, and share! Here’s How » Join the Subscription Stories Community today: robbiekellmanbaxter.com Twitter Facebook ...

Listen

39

January 26, 2022 00:34:30
Episode Cover

Beyond Subscriptions, Pricing for Impact with HBS/ESADE Professor Marco Bertini

Even though people think of me as a subscription person, I always say that for me, subscriptions are simply a tactic. Subscriptions force companies to better align their pricing with performance. If the subscriber doesn’t perceive ongoing value, they cancel the subscription…so it becomes the organization’s responsibility to ensure that the customer is achieving the desired outcome. That’s the real goal of subscriptions—to better align payment with outcome.   Professor Marco Bertini is a professor at both Esade in Spain and the Harvard Business School here in the US. He is an expert on performance-based pricing—not just subscriptions, but pay-for-consumption models and even outcome-based pricing.   Marco’s new book, The Ends Game: How Smart Companies Stop Selling Products and Start Delivering Value, which he cowrote with Oded Koenigsberg of the London Business School is one of the best pricing books I’ve read in a long time. In today’s conversation,  we talk about how to optimize your pricing model to ensure that your customers can access the value you provide, use your offering well, and most importantly get the performance outcomes they need. Welcome to the show marco.   ...

Listen

38

January 05, 2022 00:40:15
Episode Cover

Designing for Subscriptions with ThoughtSpot's Bob Baxley

Bob Baxley is a design executive who lives and works in Silicon Valley. He currently serves as the Senior Vice President of Design & Experience at ThoughtSpot, a business intelligence and data analytics platform. Prior to ThoughtSpot, Bob was Head of Product Design at Pinterest where he built, led, and managed a multifaceted design team responsible for both the consumer and business facing elements of Pinterest. Starting in 2006, Bob spent over eight years at Apple, where he served in senior leadership roles for Apple’s retail and e-commerce teams. As a Director of Design, Bob hired and led the creative team responsible for a broad variety of applications including the Apple Online Store, the Apple Store app, and the transactional areas of iPhoto and GarageBand. As Director of Design for Yahoo! Search, Bob built and led the design team that created Yahoo! Answers and designed other search-centric properties. Bob’s career as a designer began at Claris Corporation where he was Lead UI Designer for the initial releases of ClarisWorks and MacProject Pro. The author of Making the Web Work, Bob is also a sought-after public speaker sharing his experiences and observations about a range of topics related to design, technology, innovation, and the culture of Silicon Valley. Bob holds a B.A. in History and a B.S in Radio/Television/Film from the University of Texas at Austin as well as a Master of Liberal Arts from Stanford University. ...

Listen

37

December 01, 2021 00:31:18
Episode Cover

The Right Teams & Culture for Subscription Growth with Gannett-USA Today Network CMO Mayur Gupta

Mayur Gupta is the Chief Marketing and Strategy Officer at Gannett – USA Today Network. He is responsible for leading the transformation of Gannett into a subscription platform that is obsessed with user value and not just site traffic.   Mayur is responsible to actualize Gannett’s mission to build trusted local communities where people thrive. This is not his first time driving growth among subscribers. Prior to Gannett, he was CMO of the subscription meal company Freshly and before that, Mayur was Global VP for Growth & Marketing at Spotify.   Mayur was recently named to Forbes’ list of the World’s most influential CMOs of 2021.    In this conversation, we talk about the kind of teams needed for sustainable long-term subscription success, the role of “growth” as an emerging discipline and his formula for creating a flywheel for growth that can work at any kind of company.   ...

Listen

36

October 20, 2021 00:35:14
Episode Cover

How the "Daily Homepage for the World's Largest Industry" is Rethinking the Future of Travel with Skift's Rafat Ali

In March of 2020, travel as we knew it abruptly ground to a near standstill. First cruise ships were docked, and then air travel quickly became limited to very special cases. Hotels stood empty except for those that held people in quarantine and the health care workers who cared for them. I think it’s fair to say that no industry has changed more as a result of COVID than travel. Today’s guest, Rafat Ali, has been at the forefront of understanding these changes, and the massive impact they are having on the entire industry. He is the founder and CEO of Skift, “the daily homepage for the world’s largest industry”, and perhaps the leading news source for travel executives. In today’s conversation, we’ll talk about the key changes happening in the world of travel that affect us all; why he believes in a reader-centric model optimized for travel professionals, rather than advertisers, and Skift’s recent decision to “debrand” their site. ...

Listen

35

October 13, 2021 00:39:00
Episode Cover

The Quantitative Side of Customer-Centricity with Wharton's Peter Fader

Customer-centricity is essential in the world of subscriptions. To succeed you have to understand who your most valuable customers are, and invest your resources in those relationships. But measuring the value of each customer over an extended period of time, and understanding which metrics matter most, can be tricky. Peter Fader, the Frances and Pei-Yuan Chia Professor of Marketing at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, is perhaps the leading expert in the world on how to assess the value of a business by understanding the value of the customer over their entire relationship with an organization from source to completion. Peter has literally written the book on customer centricity. Well, actually, two books: Customer Centricity: Focus on the Right Customers for Strategic Advantage and The Customer Centricity Playbook which he co-authored with Sarah Toms. In this episode, we discuss customer-centricity, customer lifetime value and how to use available public data to evaluate a company--using D2C prescription glasses retailer Warby Parker as an example. We also talk about why current accounting standards don't always tell the full story--and how this needs to change. ...

Listen