Subscription Economy News: Week of 10/12/20

Subscription Economy News: Week of 10/12/20

Every week, we bring you the top stories and analyses from the global Subscription Economy.

Walmart will spread Black Friday deals over multiple days as retailers try new ways to drive holiday traffic

Excerpt from an article by Tonya Garcia on MarketWatch

Among the many COVID-19-related changes to this holiday shopping season, retailers are moving away from a big Black Friday promotional event in favor of multiple days when shoppers can enjoy the savings they would usually see the day after the Thanksgiving holiday.

[But] some experts says offering too many deals is bad business.

“Flashy sale ‘holidays’ are a glaring example of everything that is wrong with the retail industry, especially amid today’s pandemic. It’s a completely messed up system; a total race to the bottom,” said Tien Tzuo, chief executive of Zuora, a company that helps other businesses manage their subscription programs.

“Now, every day is Prime Day. It’s woven into the fabric of our lives.”

For more, read the full article on MarketWatch

Netflix Ends Free Trial Subscription in the U.S.

Excerpt from an article by Danny Vena on The Motley Fool

Netflix has quietly discontinued the free trial for new customers in the U.S. The streaming giant has long offered the promo, which varied in length from seven days to 30-days, primarily as a way to attract prospective customers. Netflix pulled the offer from its website earlier this month.

The company confirmed the move, saying that it was considering trying new things. “We’re looking at different marketing promotions in the U.S. to attract new members and give them a great Netflix experience,” a company spokesperson said.

In place of the offer for a free trial period, Netflix’s website now includes the following statement:

“Free trials are not available, but you can still sign up and take advantage of all Netflix has to offer. There are no contracts, no cancellation fees, and no commitments. You have the freedom to change your plan or cancel online at any time if you decide Netflix isn’t for you.”

For more, read the full article on The Motley Fool

Pret A Manger’s coffee subscription was inspired by fellow JAB Holding chain Panera

Excerpt from an article by Evan Sully on Business Insider 

Pret a Manger reopened its doors in May, but it’s still searching for ways to keep its business afloat amid the novel coronavirus pandemic.

In September, Pret a Manger announced that it would be debuting a new subscription service, called Pret’s YourPret Barista that would allow customers in the UK to receive as many as five barista drinks per day for $26.60 (£20) each month.

The coffee subscription idea originated from Panera Bread. Pret A Manger and Panera are both owned by JAB Holding, and the CEOs of JAB Holding companies have a WhatsApp chat to discuss ideas.

“Pret’s been run over the last 30 years with gut feel and intuition, and we haven’t done that badly, but I think the richness of data today gives you an opportunity to learn much more about your customers,” [said the company.]

More more, read the full article on Business Insider 

Apple bundles free three-month Apple Arcade trial with new device purchases

Excerpt from an article by Jon Porter on The Verge

Anyone who buys a new iPhone, iPad, Mac, iPod touch, or Apple TV after October 22nd gets free three-month trial of Apple Arcade, Apple has announced. Apple’s games subscription service normally costs $4.99 a month, and gives you access to over 100 downloadable games with no ads or in-game purchases.

Until now, Apple has only offered a one month free trial of Apple Arcade with new sign-ups.

Later this year Apple will start offering a new bundle of subscription services called Apple One. This will include subscriptions to Apple Music, Apple TV Plus, Apple Arcade, Apple News Plus, and iCloud storage in bundles ranging in price from $14.95 to $29.95 a month.

More more, read the full article on The Verge

Selling Value, Not Subscriptions, Is The Future Of Business

Excerpt from an article by Marco Bertini on Forbes

There are few winners in a global pandemic. Among them, we find companies that focus on—or have recently shifted to—selling subscriptions. By and large, these businesses have fared better than traditional retailers.

Indeed, according to Zuora’s annual Subscription Economy Index, subscription-driven businesses across a range of industries expanded at an annualized rate of 12% in the second quarter of 2020. Importantly, this (starkly) contrasts with a contraction of 10% for S&P 500 companies as a whole. In the streaming industry alone, Netflix added 10 million subscribers in the second quarter of the year, while Disney+ signed up 60 million subscribers in just nine months—a feat that took Netflix years to achieve.

Subscription models are great for access. To truly understand whether your offerings are providing value, you need to understand their impact on customers.

For more, read the full article on Forbes


For more Subscription Economy resources and events, head to and subscribe to Zuora CEO Tien Tzuo’s Subscribed Weekly newsletter, coming to your inbox every Saturday. 

Recommended for you

Key features and capabilities to look for in revenue automation software
How revenue automation can support your business initiatives
Why you need to incorporate AI into your payment fraud protection