Pay for Play
AdPerk rewards consumers for watching videos, and magazines for hosting them.
Magazine publishers are still determining how (or if) they should leverage video at their Web sites but a new service from San Francisco-based AdPerk is offering a way for them to earn both money and new subscribers by hosting video links.
Consumers visiting a publisher’s Web site can watch a series of videos to earn points that will award them three free issues of that publisher’s magazine or a discounted annual subscription. "We’re not trying to siphon anyone off, we’re trying to grow the pie," says AdPerk co-founder and CEO Barry Soicher. "There are a lot of potential readers who like the content but because there are so many choices, don’t feel the need to subscribe. Users are smart and with the right offer, they will engage. They will come for the offer but they will stay for the content."
Advertisers pay AdPerk to show the videos and AdPerk pays publishers for magazine issues fulfilled through the promotion. The rate for publishers ranges from 50 cents per issue to the full retail price, and subscribers obtained through the promotion count as real circulation.
AdPerk is also developing research metrics based on the actions of consumers with the promotion, including how many people logged on, how many registered and how many went through to checkout.
Dwell is the first publisher that’s partnered with AdPerk and has used the service for about a month. "The model is in the permission marketing arena and we saw no reason not to try it," says publisher Michaela O’Connor Abrams. "We are evaluating the results from the last month and from what I know right now, we got a nice number of subscriptions. We know advertisers responded positively and we haven’t gotten any letters or phone calls from our audience. I’m anxious to see the official results, but from everything I know right know, it’s a great program."
AdPerk sells to advertisers on its own but will partner with publishers as well. Current advertisers include Disney Mobile, Kleenex and Duxiana, which now run a separate series of ads with Dwell as well.
There may be applications for other publisher channels beyond the Web site. AdPerk is working with Dwell to promote the magazine’s Dwell On Design Conference by offering the service to exhibitors. AdPerk will pay for exhibit passes of attendees who preview the exhibitors’ videos and arrange face-to-face meetings.
Popular Science will begin using AdPerk this month. "This gives us a chance to hopefully tap a new demographic, maybe a younger demo we aren’t reaching in direct mail," says consumer marketing director Bob Cohn. "We do very well in direct mail but we’re at the limits of our universe of direct mail promotions. At the same time, we get paid a significant amount of money, unlike going through traditional third-party agents."
AdPerk expects to have 10 to 15 major consumer titles onboard by the fall. "People’s time is worth more than their money, especially when you look at something like Dwell where the average subscriber profile is $150,000 or higher in household income," says Soicher. "People’s time and attention should be measured and valued properly, and the industry hasn’t shifted there yet. The industry only counts when people pay;and there are many forms of payment."