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Product news for writers: audio paywall, group subscriptions, Android waitlist, and more
A rundown of the latest product improvements to help Substack writers succeed
At Substack, we’re focused on building for and with writers. Read on for a rundown of what we’ve released in the past few weeks—from group subscription tools to audio previews for free subscribers.
Please chime in with your feedback in the comments section.
Paid subscriber trends
We have added a new tab with charts to the Stats dashboard to help publishers better understand trends in their paid subscriber growth. There are four metrics on this chart: new paid subscribers, upgrades from free to paid, downgrades from paid, and expirations.
Read more: A guide to your Substack metrics
Email notifications for expiring credit cards
We send a new email to paying subscribers who have an expired credit card on file asking them to update their credit card info. This email goes out one week before their subscription renews. The goal of this email is to prevent payment failures, a leading reason publishers lose paid subscribers.
In addition, we also send the following churn prevention emails to paying subscribers on your behalf:
A series of emails after a payment fails that prompt subcribers to update their payment information
A renewal reminder that goes to annual subscribers, which you can customize in your settings
Reminders to people who cancel their subscription sent 1 day and 7 days before their subscription ends, which suggest that they re-subscribe
Read more: How can I customize renewal reminder emails?
Improved group subscriptions
The Group Subscriptions feature enables organizations to buy multiple subscriptions to your publication at one time. If you want to encourage organizations to pay for a group subscription, you can now easily add a “Get a group subscription” button into your post.
To learn more about how group subscriptions work, and why to set them up, watch this video walk through.
Read more: How do I offer group subscriptions?
Tip: How to tell readers about group subscriptions
Simply copy and paste the text below and share it in your next post to readers.
Did you know group subscriptions to [PUBLICATION NAME] are available? Get a discount of [PERCENTAGE] if you purchase four or more subscriptions as a group. Click here to set up your group subscription:
[ADD A “GET A GROUP SUBSCRIPTION” BUTTON]
Podcast & audio previews
A new preview feature lets podcasters send a short audio preview to free subscribers. Free subscribers can listen to this preview on the web, in the app, and in their feeds, but will need to pay to access in full.
Podcasters with payments enabled can add a second audio file to send to free subscribers only. To use this new feature, select the three gray dots and click "Add free version" after you upload a full audio file.
This paywall tool comes in addition to existing custom paywalls you can add to text-only posts on Substack, and paywall tools for video posts.
Podcast show notes
Podcasters can now add show notes to each episode that will appear in all major podcast players, including Apple and Spotify. The show notes can be edited in the post settings. (Previously, the show notes were the text of the post or the social preview description.)
Join the waitlist
Substack for Android
The Substack Android app is almost here! Join our Android waitlist to get the app first:
We recently launched a pilot for Substack Threads, a new feature that helps writers host richer conversations with their subscribers. Nine writers are currently testing and building these new tools alongside us and their communities.
We hope to expand Threads access to more publications soon. If you’re interested in using Threads for your publication, click here to add your name to the waitlist:
We hope you give these new tools and features a try. As always, please feel free to leave feedback and ideas in the comments.