The Jonas Brothers have joined the creator economy in a new way. They are backing creator subscription service, Scriber, that will deliver exclusive content to subscribers via SMS messages, reports Axios. You won’t find Scriber in the App Store or Google Play though. Scriber uses text messaging as a platform, so they avoid paying commissions to Apple and Google. The subscription service is a platform for celebrities, musicians, athletes, influencers and other professional creators to reach the top 1% to 5% of their followers.
Scriber is being launched in June by former journalist and tech entrepreneur Brian Goldsmith with backing from Nick, Joe and Kevin Jonas. According to Axios, the Jonas Brothers are equity partners. Goldsmith has also gotten funding from angel investors in the six-figure range.
To subscribe to get exclusive content from their favorite creators, users in the U.S. will text GO to a creator’s phone number provided via social media or another marketing avenue. Subscribers will set up recurring payments by credit card or through Apple Pay. The content will include links to things like access to early ticket sales, behind-the-scenes content, exclusive merchandise and more. The links are protected, so they can’t be shared. If they are, Scriber will be able to identify who did the sharing, says TechCrunch.
In an interview with Axios, Goldsmith said, “You’re targeting the little community of super fans who want either more of what you’re already doing or they want something that only subscribers will get to see.”
Jonas Brothers are equity partners
The Jonas Brothers are the first creators on the platform, but Scriber promises more to come later this month. Creators will upload their content via a special Scriber portal and retain copyright to that content. Scriber will manage the distribution of content and handle payment processing through Stripe. Scriber passes on Stripe’s 2.9% processing fee to creators, and they charge the creators $1 per subscriber per month. Creators can charge subscribers whatever they want. The Jonas Brothers are starting at $4.99 a month for their content. They will donate half the proceeds from Scriber to charity.
“We love surprising fans with secret shows and special events, and Scriber provides an easier way for our fans to get access. It’s a win-win,” said Joe Jonas in a statement.
The Jonas Brothers posted a brief video on Twitter to share the announcement along with their Scriber phone number.
“We have been looking for a new way to create even more incredible experiences and a way to give back to our fans and raise funds for great causes,” the JoBros say in the video. “And today it is HAPPENING!”
This is another example of how the subscription and creator economies are evolving to meet the changing needs of subscribers. Subscription companies are getting innovative in delivering content on platforms that circumvent fees paid to big tech companies like Google and Apple. Meanwhile, creators are meeting audiences where they are – on their phones – while developing more direct relationships with their fans. What is different about Scriber is the SMS platform for content delivery and that monetization is not the sole purpose for creators to join Scriber. Scriber’s target audiences are those who already have huge followings, fan bases and plenty of money. Scriber is just scraping a little off the top to deliver a subscription experience to fans while trying to do a little good in the world.