Boston Globe splits websites into free and paid-for

BOSTON: The Boston Globe has addressed the growing need to produce revenue from online content by dividing its Internet presence into two separate websites.

BOSTON: The Boston Globe has addressed the growing need to produce revenue from online content by dividing its Internet presence into two separate websites.

The company launched BostonGlobe.com, a new subscription-only website that will feature breaking news and content from the newspaper. The site is designed to appeal to readers accessing content from a variety of devices, including smartphones, tablets, desktop or laptop computers.

“Developing the new site is an investment in the future, and gives us a platform to manage our increasingly mobile base of readers,” said Bob Powers, VP of marketing and communications at The Boston Globe, adding that the split allows the organization to develop a new source of revenue that will help support its journalistic and digital content.

A digital subscription for BostonGlobe.com will cost $3.99 per week, but will be free for print subscribers. The site will continuously evolve to meet the needs and preferences of readers looking to access in-depth news, analysis, opinion, and photo content from tablets, smartphones and computers.

The news outlet's original website, Boston.com, will remain free and cater for readers who want to quickly and casually obtain a broad range of information and services without paying. It will consist of five full-length stories per day from The Boston Globe, “brief capsules of all Globe stories,” local news, sports coverage, articles from feature sections one week after they appear, blogs and deals.

“The two-brand strategy takes into account reader interests and varied levels of reader engagement,” said Powers. “Our research showed we have different segments of news consumers in our market and we need to reach them in different ways.”

The split is being promoted via an ad campaign from Allen & Gerritsen and PR and media relations efforts by Elevate Communications. A QR code campaign is also in place and a number of guerrilla marketing events are set to occur in the coming weeks.

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