Thursday, June 09, 2005
Two and a half years ago, El País, the most read newspaper in Spain, began a paid online subscription service that baffled everyone. Anyone without a subscription was unable to walk past the headlines found on the homepage. After over two years of a very involved marketing campaign and considerable growth in subscriptions, on June 3rd, Elpais.es has once again opened its doors, eliminating any fee requirements to access their full contents. With so much useful information available online free of charge, clearly there is a very powerful reason behind the sudden change. El País claims that the decision for change comes with the evolution of the internet as a definite fountain of information.
Of course, something had to be done for the 45,000 subscribers that have been faithful to El País. El País will increase and improve the subscription services without a price increase. New services of added value will include: Unlimited access to Le Monde’s subscription service, ability to consult Agency EFE's real time teletypes with the main national, international, economic and sport news of the day; to follow the 24 hours, life CNN+ news, and to listen in on high quality radio emissions of Cadena SER, 40 Principales, Cadena Dial, M80 Radio, Máxima FM y Sinfo Radio.
The other advantage not to be overlooked--limited advertising. In fact, when a subscribed user signs in, all advertising considered to be intrusive, is eliminated.
"We are convinced--explained CEO of Prisacom, Manuel Mirat--that the internet media leaders must combine a free service, open to all, combined with additional paid for contents and services. This is the tendency we are seeing in the sector and the model that we want to apply."