"Subscribed" in the Wall Street Journal

Subscribed makes the Wall Street Journal! We’re thrilled to offer you a few trenchant excerpts from Philip Delves Broughton’s glowing review of our CEO Tien Tzuo’s new book, “Subscribed: Why the Subscription Model Will Be Your Company’s Future — and What to Do About It.” For the full review, please visit the WSJ.


“Owning things is so over. Who wants the hassle of having your own car, lawn mower or tuxedo when, for a small monthly fee, you can just use one whenever you need it? Services such as iTunes and Spotify taught us that all those CDs can finally be consigned to the dump; Netflix cleared out the DVDs; Amazon’s Prime subscription service has 90 million Americans hooked on its bundle of shipping and shows.”


“What’s making all of this possible is technology that closes the gap between companies and their customers. Netflix doesn’t have to go to all the bother of creating TV pilots the way networks do in order to figure out what its viewers want to see. It’s constantly amassing oodles of data on what users are watching and how they watch it, so it already has a good idea of audience preferences before it throws millions of dollars at a new show.”


“In almost every category of product and service these days, you can listen to the market, launch a product or service, listen some more, then do some tinkering before committing serious resources to a new project. In fact, Mr. Tzuo argues, you’d be a fool not to. Kanye West even did it with his 2016 album, “The Life of Pablo,” which he released on the subscription service Tidal. He continued to tweak it as he learned what his fans thought of it.”


‘Subscription businesses, which derive important information from their customers’ behavior in real time, are better at fast adaptation than companies dependent on their in-store employees for feedback. Mr. Tzuo quotes Amazon’s Jeff Bezos on the difference between an e-commerce company, constantly dialed into its community of customers, and physical stores: “I don’t know about you, but most of my exchanges with cashiers are not that meaningful.”’


You can find Tien’s book on Amazon. If you’ve read it and have some questions for the author, feel free to ask Tien a question on Twitter: @tientzuo.

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