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Subscription Renewal & New Members.
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burtonian
Lifetime Member


Joined: Jan 03, 2008
Posts: 103
Location: UK

PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2012 4:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Darren wrote:

As a limited company we have no obligation to divulge details such as that. As well as being commercially sensitive and possibly beneficial to our competitors, no other Limited company would, or would be expected to publish such information.

By discussing the issue and possible options we're simply trying to be as open as possible in choosing the option acceptable to the majority.

I'm not arguing with that, Darren, I perfectly understand your position. I was trying to register the possibility that additional income may be much more or less than we think, and effects on the subscription level will vary accordingly.
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oldfogy
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Joined: May 08, 2006
Posts: 252
Location: West Midlands. UK

PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2012 4:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was going to suggest a free lifetime award for the best suggestion, but then realised that would be helping to defeat the object of increasing finances and decreasing lifetime members.

"So I probably better not suggest it"
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geddit
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Joined: Oct 05, 2007
Posts: 47

PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2012 4:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think perhaps you need to take a step back and review your business model. Things used to be alright when the number of cameras was rapidly growing, so what has changed? Has going global increased your costs? It would appear that your service for mobiles has also been resource consuming. If you know what each of these is costing, perhaps you could determine where the charges for the service should lie.
Many like me will happily spot cameras (if I could ever find a new one!) but don't really expect to be paid for it - just having a reliable data base is enough to subscribe for (no, I am not rich, just a pensioner!).
But as I don't use my mobile in the car (a real one is much better) I would be put off to think I was having to pay a significant premium to support those that do. I know it makes admin a little harder, but I am a firm believer in paying for what you get - why should I pay you the same for just the UK as for the whole world?
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Darren
Pocket GPS Staff
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Joined: 11/07/2002 14:36:40
Posts: 23848
Location: Hampshire, UK

PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2012 4:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

M8TJT wrote:
Darren wrote:
As a limited company we won't be divulging details such as that. As well as being commercially sensitive and possibly beneficial to our competitors, no other Limited company would, or would be expected to publish such information.
I don't think that burtonian was suggesting that you did.

Depends how you read it but
Burtonian wrote:
But as yet we (the general mob) don't understand the cost of providing the service, the current surplus or deficit, the need for additional income, and the ratio of lifers to subscribers, so gauging the effects on overall subs is not known
could be construed either way I guess.

But my response wasn't intended solely for his post, others in this thead have asked for details of subscriber numbers, ratios and financials and I wanted to be clear that we wouldn't be providing them.

Clearly this is a subject that has gotten you all exercised and it demonstrates our dilemma rather well. No matter what we do, some will accept it, some will be unhappy and some will be screaming blue murder!
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Darren
Pocket GPS Staff
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Joined: 11/07/2002 14:36:40
Posts: 23848
Location: Hampshire, UK

PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2012 4:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

burtonian wrote:
I'm not arguing with that, Darren, I perfectly understand your position. I was trying to register the possibility that additional income may be much more or less than we think, and effects on the subscription level will vary accordingly.

Indeed, it's impossible to quantify unfortunately. Even after 8 years we cannot accurately predict the number of subscriber renewals each month. It's subject to the vagaries of weather, economy, what day pay day is and a myriad of other variables.

My apologies for misinterpreting your post. A number of other posts had asked for financials and numbers and I wanted to clarify our position on that Smile
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Darren Griffin - Editor
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Darren
Pocket GPS Staff
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Joined: 11/07/2002 14:36:40
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Location: Hampshire, UK

PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2012 4:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

oldfogy wrote:
I was going to suggest a free lifetime award for the best suggestion, but then realised that would be helping to defeat the object of increasing finances and decreasing lifetime members.

Which definitely is NOT the object of the exercise. Increasing revenue to covers costs is, and one of the ways to achieve that is to correct the imbalance in the lifers:subscribers. It's been too successful. Perhaps another option is to retain the offer but to make its' achievement far more difficult?
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burtonian
Lifetime Member


Joined: Jan 03, 2008
Posts: 103
Location: UK

PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2012 4:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Darren wrote:

My apologies for misinterpreting your post. A number of other posts had asked for financials and numbers and I wanted to clarify our position on that Smile

Apology not required, but accepted anyway Very Happy
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Darren
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Joined: 11/07/2002 14:36:40
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Location: Hampshire, UK

PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2012 4:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

geddit wrote:
I think perhaps you need to take a step back and review your business model. Things used to be alright when the number of cameras was rapidly growing, so what has changed? Has going global increased your costs? It would appear that your service for mobiles has also been resource consuming. If you know what each of these is costing, perhaps you could determine where the charges for the service should lie.

That's simple. What's changed is the massive downturn in the use of dedicated satnav's in favour of smartphones.
Quote:
But as I don't use my mobile in the car (a real one is much better) I would be put off to think I was having to pay a significant premium to support those that do.

In which case we should probably raise the cost of the dedicated satnav subscription. We have to create the data in a massive array of formats, provide install guides, voice alerts files etc and installation support in the forums and via our help desk. Contrast that with our smartphone app. Install is done in the app, the database does not need to be converted and published each week and support is greatly simplified.
Quote:
lI know it makes admin a little harder, but I am a firm believer in paying for what you get - why should I pay you the same for just the UK as for the whole world?

Separating the databases into regions and charging separately would be massively increase our admin. You're getting the other data free in effect and a good many subscribers use our other country data.
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DennisN
Tired Old Man
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Joined: Feb 27, 2006
Posts: 14871
Location: Keynsham

PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2012 5:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Darren wrote:
It's been too successful. Perhaps another option is to retain the offer but to make its' achievement far more difficult?

How much more difficult? Award only after 10/25/50 qualifying submissions? I think the award criteria are about right, just the prize is unaffordable.

Back to basics - withdraw Free Lifetime membership from everybody, give six months free to existing Lifers compensation when you change the rules, then six months free (a year is too generous) for qualifying submissions, not added to existing freebies. If you want to be incredibly magnanimous, have an annual draw for all the year's winners for a nice techy thingy.

The poll is going my way - what would Dave, Nick and Ed give for (latest) 80%?
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If it tastes good - it's fattening.

Two of them are obesiting!!
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BigPerk
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Joined: Sep 06, 2006
Posts: 1618
Location: East Hertfordshire

PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2012 5:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Give existing 'free' members an arbitrary date before charging; say 1 April 2103 for the humour if nothing else.
Would they be allowed to transfer it to their grandchildren?

Anyway, to business:

(i) - A 6/12 month credit per camera, perhaps just by extending the member's renewal date would definitely seem to be a reasonable suggestion to me;

(ii) - I understand the reluctance to 'forcibly' withdraw life membership from lifers, but if the poll suggests a lot of goodwill on their behalf, would it not be possible to invite existing lifers to transfer to a newly defined membership category, with a nice complementary title to indicate their unselfishness, but which carries either the full subscription rate or, say, a reduced (50%?) rate?

(iii) - if other camera databases are charging more, perhaps it's time to increase the sub a bit - 21/22?

(iv) - don't offer any more reduced rate subscriptions, such as the 14.99 one last year - that clearly hasn't worked too well in increasing revenue, especially with it being allowed to be ongoing indefinitely. I have let my cheapo sub lapse for the moment simply because I do so little mileage now, and I will be quite happy to rejoin at the full (still very good value) rate when my circumstances change back;

(v) - perhaps move to an annual subscription paid by monthly standing order to even out cash flow;

(vi) - I agree it does not make commercial sense to reveal PGPSW's financial situation, so only you can judge which of the many helpful suggestions in this thread are likely to solve the problem but, if you don't mind a word of caution, be aware that the discussion may still have a 'dampening' effect on some people's decision to join/renew at this time.

Finally, good luck to all of you 'on the bridge' - I hope your efforts in running the excellent service are able to continue with any changes you make.
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DennisN
Tired Old Man
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Joined: Feb 27, 2006
Posts: 14871
Location: Keynsham

PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2012 5:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

DennisN wrote:
Darren wrote:
It's been too successful. Perhaps another option is to retain the offer but to make its' achievement far more difficult?

How much more difficult? Award only after 10/25/50 qualifying submissions? I think the award criteria are about right, just the prize is unaffordable.

Back to basics - withdraw Free Lifetime membership from everybody, give six months free to existing Lifers compensation when you change the rules, then six months free (a year is too generous) for qualifying submissions, not added to existing freebies. If you want to be incredibly magnanimous, have an annual draw for all the year's winners for a nice techy thingy.

The poll is going my way - what would Dave, Nick and Ed give for (latest) 80%?


See the red bit - I've just realised it's got to be a year otherwise somebody who subscribed last week will lose out if his sub is replaced with six months free!
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Dennis

If it tastes good - it's fattening.

Two of them are obesiting!!
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johnrobinson123
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Joined: May 17, 2006
Posts: 3

PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2012 6:19 pm    Post subject: lifetime membership Reply with quote

it seems easy and fair that one submission of a new/change opf speed camera equals one free year, if that person entrers another new/change say 5 months later then the year starts again from there, if no submissions no free membership. i think pocketgpsworld does a fantastic job, and i love your news letters. the other way is to charge 1 to download the database each time. say via paypal. many thanks from me for keeping my tomtom speed camera database up to date.
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M8TJT
The Other Tired Old Man
The Other Tired Old Man


Joined: Apr 04, 2006
Posts: 10118
Location: Bexhill, South Sussex, UK

PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2012 7:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

DennisN wrote:
The poll is going my way
But the poll is meaningless. It doesd not ask the question like 'Should lifers give it up?' It just asks whether they should be revised OR withdrawn. They ARE being revised. They will be withdrawn in some shape or form because PGPSW can't afford it. Daren has told us so, and is asking for our input on how.

In this day and age, remember that public consultations are usually a horendously expensive excercise that no one takes any notice of anyway. At least the cost of this consultation is minimal (free) and I suspect that the majority believe that the powers that be will actually listen to constructive propositions. This is not to say that I think that your proposition is not constructive as I happen to agree (much to my chagrin)
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M8TJT
The Other Tired Old Man
The Other Tired Old Man


Joined: Apr 04, 2006
Posts: 10118
Location: Bexhill, South Sussex, UK

PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2012 7:59 pm    Post subject: Re: lifetime membership Reply with quote

johnrobinson123 wrote:
the other way is to charge 1 to download the database each time.
It used to be that way (but 2) but was withdrawn due to piracy.
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sausages
Lifetime Member


Joined: Feb 25, 2005
Posts: 62

PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2012 8:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Difficult decisions lie ahead for the site admin, that's for sure.

When Darren says current lifers will not have lifer status rescinded, with all the agreed benefits, I'm sure that decision is being made for legal reasons. To ask Darren / The Management to take such action is unrealistic and could prove catastrophically counter productive in relation to the site's survival.

That in itself makes the decisions which clearly need to be made all the more difficult. The only realistic options are the traditional ones which face all businesses:

Increase the fee to use the database.

Increase the user base and keep the cost to use the database the same.

Reduce the cost of maintaining the database.

Combination of all three with additional revenue streams.

The latter is the crucible where many, many businesses live or die and I think the focus of discussion ought to be on additional revenue streams, be they tie-ins with other related businesses, competitions as a marketing aid and, last but certainly not least, some sort of donation option.
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