Boston Globe Offers 26-Week Online Subscription for $20 through Groupon

Taking its cue from its parent company (The New York Times), The Boston Globe today launched a Groupon campaign to acquire new subscribers.However, there are subtle differences between The Globe’s Groupon offer and the one NYT launched in August.

First, the subscription term is much longer — 26 weeks, compared to the 8-week offer The Times had. As Subscription Site Insider‘s How-to on Selling Subscriptions through Groupon discusses, this is a better practice. Even better would be an annual term.Second, the subscription is not simply for digital access — it includes Sunday paper delivery. While I usually advise against bundling print and online subs, offering a tangible product on Groupon (not just a digital one) can lead to better take-rates, and the Sunday paper is definitely more tangible than the mobile app NYT offered in August.The problem for The Globe, however, will be to convert those Groupon subscribers to regular subscribers. Groupon doesn’t share buyers’ email addresses, phone numbers, or credit card numbers with any marketing partners, and thus, The Globe will have to pursue a more aggressive (and expensive) retention campaign.

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