The Golden Goose Behind the Paywall – Or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Login
You're walking through the beautiful scenery of the internet. The digital wind is stroking your face, Twitter birds are singing to you, and the smell of freshly baked jokes from Reddit fills the air. Suddenly, you find something interesting: a valuable bit of online content that shines like a siren and calls to you.
But wait! There's a huge gate in your way, a strong fence that's almost see-through and offers digital wonders you've never heard of. A message appears that says, "Unlock the "Golden Goose" behind this gate with your email address and $5 per month. "Come on over!"
When you look at the price tag, you feel like a brave explorer meeting a scary dragon. You might think the job is to hand over some cold, hard digital cash. But no, dear reader, it's the brave sacrifice of your beloved email, which is getting ready for an onslaught of newsletters, spammy offers, and the odd desperate plea to come back when you cancel.
Let's stop for a moment, shall we? Before we go any further into the strange world of "paywall" material, I want to warn content producers to pay attention. Your viewers' contact information is like a valuable gem, and they don't want you to be like a shady street artist selling shiny but useless items for a few gold coins.
So, your content shouldn't be about those boring magic beans. Instead, it should be about the real magic beanstalk that goes to a land full of golden eggs. The eggs are, of course, helpful e-books, exclusive pieces, or the much-sought-after secrets of taking care of alpacas. You might ask, "But how do I make sure my content is more beanstalk than bean?" while scratching your head. So, get ready, because we're going to a place called "Behind the Paywall" to find out.
First, make your content the exact definition of the phrase "golden goose." Yes, I mean make it so shiny and tempting that people can't help but be drawn to it. Make your stories so interesting that people will want to put them in a frame. Make movies that make Steven Spielberg's work look like it was done in high school. Make your study papers into suspenseful whodunits. Second, worth is the most important thing. No one will pay to hear you rant about how the barista messed up your order for a latte. Unless, of course, you can turn that rant into a funny piece of observational comedy, complete with a skit about all the wrong ways to say "quinoa."
Lastly, remember that your audience's inbox is a holy place. Treat it like a shrine. Or, even better, treat it like you would your grandmother's living room: don't make too much noise, don't make a mess, and don't post anything inappropriate. To sum up, keep in mind that gating your content is a dance, a waltz between giving value and keeping people's trust. If you do it right, you won't just have a following; you'll have a group.
Now, you young people who make material, go forth. Tame that rich bird. Get that beanstalk built. Always keep in mind that behind every fence is a possible playground. As long as it doesn't have magic beans everywhere.
And with that, I'm leaving the land of behind-the-paywall content, where the golden geese fly free and the content is always new, always fresh. valuable. Until we meet again, I hope that your inboxes stay clean and that your paywalls keep bringing in money.