Here’s a riddle. When does a free magazine charge a subscription fee? Answer: When it wants to get on Apple Newsstand.
TRVL free Travel Magazine had a dilemma. It was a well-regarded iPad-exclusive travel magazine, which offered readers a unique look at the world through its blend of beautiful photography and thought-provoking stories. With spotlights on places like Antarctica, Cambodia, and India, every issue transported the reader to a different part of the world.
TRVL knew that Apple Newsstand would do wonders for its viewership. At the same time, due to its software partner, it could not get on Newsstand without offering a paid subscription, and it did not want to charge its readers.
So here we are, reading about other Apps (sic) jubilous reports on how their downloads exploded with Newsstand, faced with a devilish dilemma: joining Newsstand and offering a paid subscription when we really don’t want our readers to think we are after their money, or not joining Newsstand and dying a slow death somewhere in a forgotton corner of the App Store…
So what did TRVL do when faced with this possible identity crisis? Answer: It found a loophole. It offered a paid subscription, and then proceeded to give that money away. After asking its readers for their favorite charities, TRVL settled on the six most popular: Amnesty, Red Cross, Warchild, WWF, Kiva, and WSPA)
TRVL blazed new trails when it became the first iPad-exclusive magazine in the world. With its decision to turn a tough choice into a good cause, it breaks the mold again.
TRVL is available on iTunes and in Newsstand now – free of charge, with an optional $0.99 monthly subscription fee, which will go to charity.