New Costco Connection Online Subscription

Did you know that you can now subscribe to Costco Connection online and stop receiving a printed copy every month? That is now the case, via the Costco Connection Online Subscription page. You can choose between receiving an email alert only, email alert and printed edition, or neither. I can only imagine how much money this will save Costco. The magazine has a circulation of 8.3 million (as of December 2010). At $0.50 a magazine (which I imagine is on the cheap side), plus the cost of postage and labor, we’re probably talking at least $8 million a month that it costs Costco to print the magazine. I don’t know what percentage of subscribers actually read the magazine every month, but I would bet at least half simply recycle it every month without ever opening it. If those people subscribed online instead, that would save Costco a lot of money, as well as save a lot of trees.

If you recently read my post on the new coupon book, renewal and refund email program you might be familiar with the new approaches Costco is taking to be green and saving some money. I think this is another way they are doing that. I found some interesting facts about the magazine while researching this. Costco Connection has the fourth largest magazine circulation in the United States and of that 8.3 milion, 18% of its readers are millionaires, with 55% owning their own business. If you advertise in the Costco Connection, 57% of readers make a purchase because of an ad they saw in the magazine. If I sold a high-end product in Costco you’d better believe I’d be advertising in the Connection after seeing those stats.

I think that readership will go down due to this new program. With the print edition I feel like it would lie around the house, maybe sit on the coffee table or kitchen counter, and when someone was bored, they would pick it up. Now, it will be easy to “mark as read” or delete, alas to never be seen again. That is likely to reduce advertising rates, but I think the millions saved per month have to make up for that. What are your thoughts on this? Will you switch to an online only subscription?

Sources: Echo Media, Wikipedia, Costco Connection

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