Welcome back to Subscriptions Weekly! This week, we review Spotify’s price hike, Apple’s MLS streaming service boost after Messi’s arrival, and Instagram’s creator subscription launch in more countries. We also discuss what the Q2 earnings season tells us about the state of global payments and the tenets of a successful horizontal scalability plan. 

Spotify finally raises U.S. premium subscription prices

Spotify, the world’s largest paid music-streaming service with around 210M subscribers, has raised the price of its premium subscription in the U.S. to $10.99/month. This is the first such price hike since the service launched in 2011, and the move comes after months of pressure from the music industry and seeing its competitors raise prices similarly. Learn more on Variety.

Lionel Messi is already giving Apple’s MLS streaming service a boost

Apple has reportedly signed up more than one million subscribers to its Major League Soccer (MLS) Season Pass, with Lionel Messi’s debut for Inter Miami helping secure the largest single channel audience for a match on linear television since 2004. Apple is in the first season of a ten-year, U.S. $2.5 billion global broadcast deal that includes the rights to every game from the U.S. soccer top flight. Read more on SportsPro Media.

The Messi effect is just proof of how exclusivity is key to driving acquisition. According to our research, 66% of consumers want exclusive subscription products. 

What to know what else delights subscribers? Download the What consumers want report to get the insights you need to delight your subscribers—from acquisition to retention across generations and regions.

Instagram is launching creator subscriptions in Australia, Canada, the UK, and more

Meta is rolling out Instagram subscriptions to all eligible creators in Australia, Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Spain, and the United Kingdom–allowing users to offer their followers paid access to exclusive content and receive a special badge that helps them stand out in the comments section and creators’ inboxes. Learn more on TechCrunch.

What the Q2 2023 earnings season will tell us about the state of global payments

With macroeconomic headwinds remaining fairly strong in many markets, Q2 will give businesses a sense of where the global payments industry is and what priorities will dominate over the next cycles. Reduced consumer spending and weakening profits have led investors to become increasingly active, particularly in the payment processing space, where the growth peaks of the pandemic are now a blip in the rear-view mirror. Read more on Forbes.

The tenets of a successful horizontal scalability plan

Subscription businesses must invest correctly in performance and scalability to ensure customers have an engaging experience. Rather than an isolated focus on vertical features, creating a high-quality, well-performing subscription service is key. Creating a high-performing, horizontal platform will enable a positive, consistent subscriber experience. Learn more on Forbes.

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