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New Feature: The Subscription Center

Monday, June 04, 2007

FeedBlitz has long been a publisher-centric service - but a significant amount of the value we deliver for publishers is in treating their subscribers well. As a result, we provide extensive capabilities to subscribers online, including the ability to manage their own email addresses, delivery preferences and the ability to add independent subscriptions.

The thing is, of course, is that powerful features can come at a price: complexity. In particular, for most of FeedBlitz's subscribers who only have one or two subscriptions, the whole GUI was overkill. We needed to simplify tasks at feedblitz.com for ordinary subscribers: those readers who aren't bloggers and who aren't likely to be interested in syndicating their own content.

What they need is our new Subscription Center - a radically simpler, easier to use, subscriber-centric view onto a single subscription at a time. It's accessible via the "My Account" menus of course, but more importantly we've added links in the outbound messages which take the subscriber directly to the relevant page of their personal Subscription Center.

Subscribers can easily access their profiles from here, quickly add a new subscription, as well as explore and understand all the options they have for each individual subscription. Power users, however, fret not: the existing menu systems are untouched and aren't going anywhere. We're just not requiring them any more.




Blogger Herman said...

The addition of a promotion for the Subscription Centre to my emails is a powerful disincentive to using FeedBlitz. It detracts from my blog post. The Subscription Centre components are far removed from the skills and interests of the 90% of Internet users we are supposed to reach through FeedBlitz. Way too much for the average email reader.

4:17 PM, June 05, 2007  
Blogger Phil Hollows said...

Hi Herman: The vast majority of feedback on this takes the opposite view (it's why we built it in the first place - feedback from publishers andn their readers).

For example, many subscribers write to the list owners for things like a simple email address change (which for anti-spam reasons we don't permit a list owner to do). The Subscription Center makes everyday tasks such as these self-service, reducing workload for both publishers and subscribers. We share the same goal: It's the average reader we're trying to benefit, and the Subscription Center is much simpler than prior subscriber capabilities. It's not a promotion - it's a self-service center;

Subscriber management capabilities are, in fact, an emerging "best practice" for bulk mailiers like FeedBlitz to give subscribers increasing control over how and when they receive their emails. Since the link's next to the existing unsubscribe message, and typically fits nicely on a single line underneath your post and all of its content, flares and whatever, I personally disagree that it's distracting, but we're always open to suggestions about how to improve things. Anyone else care to comemnt, either way?

12:03 AM, June 06, 2007  
Blogger Johan said...

Hi Phil

Great answer. This make a lot of sense. Thanks

2:18 AM, July 29, 2007  

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