DailyLit Moves to All Free Content
DailyLit, the online service that sends readers book excerpts daily via email and RSS feed, announced this week that the service is now 100-percent free. "Starting now, any book, story or series featured on DailyLit is being made available for free," CEO Susan Danziger blogged on the DailyLit Web site.
According to Danziger, the move was in response to user habits on the site. "Readers overwhelmingly selected free books over paid titles," she says. "We’ve also found that by making DailyLit completely free, it’s an even more attractive destination site for readers. And that, in turn, helps publishers reach more readers and sell more books."
Danziger says the company is pursuing various revenue models, including sponsorships from publishers and other third parties. "Initial indications show that this is going to be very fruitful for us as evidenced by a recent sponsorship from Diane Von Furstenberg," she says. Through the fashion designer's sponsorship, one of her favorite books, "Madame de Staël: The First Modern Woman" by Francine du Plessix Gray, is being made available for free to DailyLit readers through January.
Publishers that currently are DailyLit sponsors include HarperStudio and Random House. "Publishers want to sell books, and DailyLit is all about helping them do that. We work with publishers in a number of different ways, and help them market their books to our over 150,000 readers," says Danziger. "We’ve built some interesting features such as an integration with Twitter in which people who link their DailyLit profiles to their Twitter accounts will have books they’re reading automatically tweeted to their followers. It’s a great way to quickly spread the word about a particular book in a matter of a few hours to a very large audience. Publishers also benefit from sales of books made through DailyLit—each installment of a book or excerpt includes a link to buy the book."
Danziger mentions that DailyLit also is starting to work with "guest curators" who are well-known in their field to help select books for the site's readers. The first guest curator will be Sara Nelson, books director, O, The Oprah Magazine. "We're planning to launch her first piece for DailyLit next week," says Danziger.