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Unveiling the Power of Subscription Commerce: Highlights from SubSummit 2023

  • Jennifer Cline, Director of Marketing - SubSummit
  • Jun 20, 2023
  • 5 minute read

If you are invested in subscriptions, memberships, or recurring revenue, then chances are our paths crossed in Dallas this year during SubSummit 2023

The world’s largest event dedicated to the subscription commerce economy opened its doors on May 31, attracting industry leaders, innovators, and forward-thinkers eager to explore new strategies and insights. 

The hundreds of attendees in the room — representing leaders of the industry like Netflix, FabFitFun, and Walmart+ alongside rising stars in the direct-to-consumer space like Entry Envy, Blind Barrels, and more — got to network with one another, discover exclusive subscription commerce trends, and learn valuable recurring revenue strategies all in just three days.

There are too many insightful moments to write about from this year’s event. So here’s a recap on some of the key subscription commerce trends that were shared at the best subscription show in the world:

Subscription Economy Insights

The SubSummit Co-Founders shared that nearly 96% of U.S. consumers are active subscribers as of today, which was followed by a simple phrase: “You need to obsess over your customers,” said Christopher George, CEO of SubSummit.

This exclusive data point was extracted from the 2023 Subscription Commerce Industry Outlook Annual Report, which SubSummit attendees received two weeks before it became available to the public.

Produced under the authority of The Subscription Trade Association (SUBTA) and in partnership with Attest, this comprehensive report contains exclusive insights on:

  • Best customer retention strategies
  • Best customer acquisition strategies
  • Best ways to leverage membership-based business models
  • 2023 holiday season projections
  • And more

Download your free copy of the report today to access the latest consumer insights and see where you rank within your industry.

How to Engage with Customers in 2023 & Beyond: The Case for Memberships

Did you know that almost half of customers shopping on your site are eager to pay for benefits if they have a strong relationship with your brand?

When Jay Myers, Co-Founder of Bold Commerce, said this, my notebook instantly began to feel smaller. How was I going to be able to write all these wonderful insights down? Bold Commerce data further showcased that members spend a remarkable 400% more than non-members

SubSummit highlighted the value of membership-based business models in driving customer engagement. The best part? Membership offerings can be implemented for virtually any kind of subscription-based business: Subscription boxes (look at FabFitFun), digital subscriptions (DoorDash), media & publications leverage it, even streaming services… 

If you’re looking for a way to engage with customers in 2023 and beyond, look toward building an all-encompassing membership or loyalty program. 

Want to watch Jay’s session and every other track session held at SubSummit? The 2023 On-Demand Package can be yours for $199 only! Learn more.

How to Enrich Your Customers’ Lives in 2023 & Beyond: The Case for Bundling

At SubSummit 2023, the power of bundling took center stage as industry leaders from Duolingo, Verizon, AMC Networks, and Bango shared their expertise. 

Verizon’s groundbreaking bundle, +Play, is redefining how customers consume subscription entertainment services, and James Appell, Content Strategy & Business Development Manager at Verizon, emphasized the need for businesses to respond to empowered customers’ evolving consumption preferences. 

“Customers are now empowered to consume subscription entertainment services in whichever way, in whichever form, in whichever consumption model they choose. And we as a business need to respond to that,” he said. 

Building — or rather facilitating partnerships — in subscription commerce is at the core of SubSummit’s mission. And on that stage were four amazing brands represented, all part of an innovative strategic partnership. 

“It’s interesting to me to be part of an offering like a +Play, where we can be complementary and more powerful in combination with others than we are standing on our own,” said Eric de Cholnoky, Senior Vice President of Distribution and Business Development at AMC Networks. “We don’t have to keep a subscriber’s interest just in our service if we’re bundled with others in a strategic way.”

This strategic partnership was one of many on display at this year’s event, and it sparked some insightful conversations between attendees from different verticals that I’m sure we’ll hear about in the near future. 

Building Partnerships in Subscription Commerce: Why In-Person Events Are Irreplaceable

The palpable energy that was felt throughout the SubSummit Exhibitor Hall from the moment the doors opened to the day they closed cemented the value of in-person events for all attendees present. 

The conference is designed to help subscription professionals walk away with actionable takeaways that can be implemented the next day, and the networking opportunities enabled attendees to build meaningful partnerships with peers and solutions providers alike.

The 2023 Hosted Buyer Program, for example, facilitated 1-on-1 meetings throughout Day 2 between pre-qualified consumer subscription brands and solutions providers. This year’s brand-new AI software took the meeting pairing to another level, providing attendees with the best potential partner based on their current needs. 

One of the participants, Nicholas Kristock of KindKatch, said that this was his first year in the program despite attending the event three times. “It’s the most influential part of the conference for me, because there’s no amount of digital marketing that can replace the ability to sit across the table from a human and then just shake hands and establish a relationship,” he told me. “I got to make eight great relationships and I’m super thrilled.”

This year, SubSummit also increased the number of networking breaks to give merchants and solutions providers more chances to strike meaningful conversations.

Events like the Welcome Reception, The Cube Awards Happy Hour, the Women in Subscription Meetup — which were opened to all attendees -— all contributed to strengthening the community the conference has fostered for eight years now. 

From maximizing recurring revenue to expanding professional networks and nurturing lifelong customer relationships, SubSummit proved to be the gateway to success in the subscription commerce world. 

Embrace the subscription revolution and tap into the limitless opportunities it presents by attending the next SubSummit event in Dallas on June 16-19, 2024. Join us and be part of the subscription commerce movement!

Join the 2024 Waitlist