40 episodes

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, Robbie Kellman Baxter interviews the leaders of this revolution about how they’re using subscription pricing and membership models to redefine the biggest industries and generate predictable recurring revenue along the way.

Subscription Stories: True Tales from the Trenches Robbie Kellman Baxter

    • Business
    • 5.0 • 100 Ratings

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, Robbie Kellman Baxter interviews the leaders of this revolution about how they’re using subscription pricing and membership models to redefine the biggest industries and generate predictable recurring revenue along the way.

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

    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.
     

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

    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.

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

    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.

    • 39 min
    Building a Subscription Bundle to Better Deliver on Your Forever Promise with Tommy O'Hare, SVP of Outside

    Building a Subscription Bundle to Better Deliver on Your Forever Promise with Tommy O'Hare, SVP of Outside

    Bundles are a hot topic right now and Outside+ is a fascinating example. A few months ago, the Outside Magazine organization announced they were welcoming 20 new publications including Trail Runner, Velo News and Yoga Journal to their family. More recently, they launched a suite of new features such as training plans & workouts, access to the Gaia GPS Premium app and discounts for outdoor events available with the new Outside+ membership.
     
    By bundling together content, discounts and other benefits, Outside is building a membership that more fully delivers on their promise to inspire active participation in the world outside
     
    I recently interviewed Tommy O’Hare, SVP Business Development and Licensing for Outside for the inaugural D2C Summit, a new conference I co-created with Global Media Association, FIPP, and want to share that conversation with you here on the podcast. In this conversation, he shared the journey of rolling up this bundle of benefits to support the goals and challenges of Outside’s most engaged members. I hope you enjoy it.

    • 40 min
    How Profit and Purpose are Combining to Create New 21st Century Iconic D2C Companies Like Tesla, The RealReal and Bellwether Coffee with DBL Ventures' Ira Ehrenpreis

    How Profit and Purpose are Combining to Create New 21st Century Iconic D2C Companies Like Tesla, The RealReal and Bellwether Coffee with DBL Ventures' Ira Ehrenpreis

    There is no bigger topic when it comes to consumer sentiment than the rising demand and focus on Environmental, Social, and Corporate Governance related issues. Today we’re looking at this challenge from the perspective of a leading VC who has invested in some of the most iconic consumer focused, mission driven businesses.
     
    Ira Ehrenpreis has been investing in companies that are committed to making a positive impact on the world for more than 20 years. A double bottom line investor, even before impact investing was cool, Ira has helped build the category and the discipline in venture capital. He currently serves as president of the Western Association of Venture Capitalists and co-chair of the VC Network. He's a founder at DBL Partners, which is perhaps the largest and most well-known impact investing and sustainability focused firm in the venture asset class. An early investor in companies like Tesla, The RealReal, SpaceX and Bellweather Coffee, Ira is a real visionary. He's also a longtime friend, and always inspiring.
     
    I recently interviewed Ira for the inaugural D2C Summit, a new conference I cocreated with Global Media Association FIPP, and want to share that conversation with you here on the podcast. In it, he talks about bold innovation across sectors and D2C business models, and shares several examples of how companies are using a focus on impact as a strategic advantage. Welcome, Ira.

    • 43 min
    The Importance of Storytelling in the World of Subscriptions with GoodTrust's Daniel Sieberg

    The Importance of Storytelling in the World of Subscriptions with GoodTrust's Daniel Sieberg

    The ability to tell a good story is valuable—and not only when the story is the product, as it is in journalism. Stories can build understanding, trust and connection with members, prospects and investors alike. Storytelling is an important skill in the Membership Economy, and GoodTrust Co-founder Daniel Sieberg is a fantastic storyteller.
     
    Daniel Sieberg started his career as a journalist, and writer, working for the likes of CNN and CBS News. He went on to work at the intersection of news and technology at Google, where he was a senior leader in the Google Newslab.
     
    As a journalist and a technologist, Daniel knows how to tell and share stories—he has used these skills well at GoodTrust, the subscription-based company he cofounded to help people safeguard their digital assets and share them with loved ones today or after they pass away.
    Daniel has an interesting title-- he currently serves as Chief Storyteller. He uses his experience in journalism to build trust, understanding and connection with GoodTrust stakeholders—members, investors and partners alike. I recently interviewed Daniel for the inaugural D2C Summit, a new conference I cocreated with Global Media Association FIPP, and want to share that conversation with you here on the podcast. In our conversation, we talk about how to launch a new company in an undefined space, the power of transparency in storytelling, and how to use a journalistic lens to turbocharge your market research strategy.
     
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    • 38 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
100 Ratings

100 Ratings

PodcastLover812 ,

Interesting, informative, entertaining

I am drawn to podcasts that offer compelling content; educated hosts who ask engaging questions that elicit interesting answers out of accomplished guests; and fun anecdotes along the way. "Subscription Stories" ticks all these boxes--and more!

Bobbobbob1232123 ,

Love this podcast; especially enjoyed the charity: water episode

I have run non-profit organizations for over 20 years. In her interview with MZ Goodman, at Charity: water (episode 9), Robbie and Ms. Goodman helped me gain all sorts of new insights—and most importantly a new way of looking at—what I have often seen as the arduous task of raising funds for a mission-oriented organization. When one takes the time to plan for life-time relationships with donors and to provide value to the donor, rather than just extracting their donation, everything changes. Thanks for a great podcast!

G8toraide ,

Love it!

It’s wonderful that Robbie and her team are able to bring such a wide variety of interviews from different backgrounds and vastly different companies. It’s so informative and helpful! Thanks!

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