Shopify Subscription App

Subscription Marketing Strategy: Free strategies + Examples

To develop a successful subscription marketing strategy, focus on customer acquisition, retention, and CLV. Use tactics like free subscriptions, personalized messaging, and learn from successful examples. Attract and retain loyal subscribers for long-term business success.

From food subscription box services to beauty box subscriptions, customers have a seemingly endless array of options to choose from. That’s why having a well-crafted marketing strategy is absolutely crucial to stand out and make your mark.
Reach your ideal customers and build brand advocates through targeted campaigns, personalized emails, and influencer partnerships. Elevate your subscription business with the right marketing strategy. Let’s get started!

Save Your Business With Subscription Marketing Strategies

Are you a subscription business owner struggling to stay afloat?
Or perhaps you’re doing well but looking to take your business to the next level?

Look no further than your subscription marketing strategy. That’s right, a well-crafted marketing approach can be the secret weapon to saving or growing your subscription brand.

  • But why is marketing so important? For starters, it’s how you reach and engage with potential customers. Without a solid marketing plan, you may be missing out on valuable opportunities to build brand awareness and attract new subscribers. In addition, a good marketing strategy can help you retain your existing subscribers, upsell them to higher-value plans, and increase their lifetime value to your business.
  • So, what does a winning marketing strategy look like for subscription brands? It starts with a deep understanding of your target audience and their needs. From there, you can create compelling messaging that speaks to their pain points and offers solutions. You’ll also want to explore various channels to reach your audience, from email marketing to social media advertising and beyond.

So, whether you’re looking to save a struggling subscription brand or take a successful one to new heights, don’t overlook the power of a smart subscription marketing strategy.

With the right approach, you can be a marketing superhero and drive your business toward success. Isn’t that something to wish for?

Defining Objectives for Your Subscription Marketing Strategies

It’s important to align your specific marketing objectives with your overall business goals and regularly measure and analyze the performance of your marketing efforts to ensure you’re on track to achieve them.

The objectives of subscription marketing strategies can vary depending on the specific goals of your business. However, some common objectives include:

  • Customer Acquisition: The primary objective is to attract new customers and convert them into subscribers. This involves capturing their interest, showcasing the value of your subscription service, and convincing them to make a purchase.
  • Customer Retention: Retaining existing subscribers is crucial for long-term success. The objective here is to build strong relationships with your subscribers, provide ongoing value, and encourage them to renew their subscriptions. we call it customer retention marketing.
  • Increase Customer Lifetime Value (CLV): Customer lifetime value for subscriptions refers to the total value a customer brings to your business over their lifetime as a subscriber. The objective is to maximize the revenue generated from each subscriber by increasing their average order value, encouraging upsells or cross-sells, and reducing churn.
  • Enhance Brand Awareness: Building brand awareness is essential to attract new customers and differentiate your subscription service from competitors. The objective is to increase brand visibility, reach a wider audience, and establish your brand as a trusted authority in your industry.
  • Foster Customer Engagement: Engaged customers are more likely to remain loyal and refer others to your subscription service. The objective is to create experiences that actively engage subscribers, such as exclusive content, interactive features, and personalized communication.
  • Drive Conversions and Revenue: Ultimately, the objective of subscription marketing strategies is to drive conversions and generate revenue. This involves optimizing conversion rates, increasing the average order value, and implementing effective pricing strategies.
  • Implement Loyalty Programs: Implementing a well-designed loyalty program can foster customer retention and enhance engagement for subscription businesses, creating a sense of value and incentivizing long-term commitment.

18 Subscription Marketing Strategies: Free strategies + Example

If you’re a subscription brand looking to up your marketing game, you’re in the right place. Our team of experts has put together a list of 17 proven strategies to help you attract and retain subscribers like never before. So grab a cup of coffee and get ready to take some notes.

1. Optimize Your Website For Conversions

Optimizing your website for conversions is a great way to ensure that customers can easily sign up for your subscription service. Make sure your website is easy to navigate and understand, and that customers can easily find the information they need to make an informed decision. You should also make sure the signup process is fast and straightforward. It’s almost a costless start to figuring out your subscription marketing strategy too.

2. Engaging Content

Create engaging content such as videos, blog posts, and podcasts to promote your subscription service. Utilize these materials in your marketing efforts on social media, email campaigns, and other advertising channels. A key component of a successful subscription marketing strategy is a thoughtful content strategy. By producing high-quality and valuable content, you can attract potential customers and engage existing subscribers. Content marketing can showcase your expertise, educate your audience, and build trust.

Consider the following tactics for an impactful content strategy:

  • Develop Engaging Blog Posts: Create informative and compelling blog posts that address your target audience’s pain points and interests. Incorporate relevant keywords, including “subscription marketing examples” and “subscription marketing strategy example,” to optimize your content for search engines. Use real-life examples and case studies to illustrate the value and benefits of your subscription service.
  • Produce Captivating Videos: Videos have become a powerful tool in content marketing. Create engaging video content that highlights the unique aspects of your subscription offering. Show real customers’ testimonials or demonstrate how your product or service solves a problem. By incorporating “subscription marketing examples” and “subscription marketing strategy example” in your video descriptions and titles, you can increase visibility and attract potential subscribers.
  • Offer Valuable Resources: Develop downloadable e-books, whitepapers, or industry reports that provide valuable insights and information related to your subscription service. These resources can establish your brand as an authority in the field and attract prospects who are seeking valuable information. Include “subscription marketing examples” and “subscription marketing strategy example” as relevant examples within the content to showcase your expertise.

Subscription Marketing Examples:

The Dollar Shave Club and NatureBox are successful brands that have mastered engaging content.

3. Personalization

Customize the shopping experience for your customers based on their preferences and past purchase history.

Subscription Marketing Example:

For example, Stitch Fix offers a personalized styling service where customers receive a curated selection of clothing items based on their individual preferences.

4. Influencer Marketing

Partner with social media influencers or micro-influencers to promote your brand and subscription service to their followers. Influencer marketing has emerged as a potent strategy for subscription businesses. Collaborating with influencers who align with your brand values and target audience can significantly boost your reach and credibility.

Consider the following influencer marketing tactics:

  • Identify Relevant Influencers: Research and identify influencers in your industry or niche who have a substantial following and high engagement rates. Look for influencers who can authentically promote your subscription service. Collaborating with influencers who have a genuine interest in your offering can maximize the impact of your campaigns.
  • Sponsored Content and Reviews: Engage influencers to create sponsored content or reviews that highlight the benefits and value of your subscription service. Encourage them to share their experiences and provide unique insights. By incorporating “subscription marketing examples” and “best subscription marketing strategy” in the influencer’s content, you can showcase real-life use cases and attract potential subscribers.
  • Social Media Takeovers: Invite influencers to take over your brand’s social media accounts for a day or specific campaign. This enables them to share exclusive content, engage with your audience, and increase brand visibility. Collaborate with influencers who have experience in “subscription marketing strategy” to ensure their insights align with your marketing objectives.

Subscription Marketing Examples:

  1. The skincare brand Glossier has built a strong following through influencer marketing, with influencers like Emily Weiss promoting their products on social media.
  2. The beauty brand Tarte Cosmetics has done influencer takeovers on their Instagram account, where influencers showcase their favorite Tarte products. This subscription marketing strategy is charming to customers and is more likely to drive thousands of new users toward your service.

5. User-Generated Content

Encourage customers to share their own content, such as photos or videos, featuring your product. This subscription marketing strategy helps build a sense of community around your brand and can attract new customers through word-of-mouth.

Subscription Marketing Example:

For example, the subscription box company FabFitFun frequently features user-generated content on their social media channels.

6. Create Targeted Email Campaigns

Use email campaigns to target existing and potential customers. Include incentives such as discounts, free shipping, and special offers.

Email marketing is a powerful tool for nurturing subscribers and encouraging conversions. By sending meaningful and targeted emails, you can keep your audience engaged and increase subscription retention rates. Consider the following strategies for effective email marketing:

  • Welcome Emails: Send a personalized welcome email to new subscribers. Use this opportunity to introduce your brand, highlight key features of your subscription service, and provide any necessary onboarding information. Incorporate “subscription marketing strategy” and “send meaningful emails” throughout the email copy to reinforce your marketing objectives.
  • Drip Campaigns: Create automated drip campaigns that deliver a series of emails over time. Each email in the sequence should provide valuable content, exclusive offers, or updates to keep subscribers engaged. Utilize “subscription marketing examples” and “send meaningful emails” in the subject lines and body text to grab attention and reinforce your messaging.
  • Personalized Recommendations: Leverage customer data to personalize your email communications. Segment your subscriber base based on preferences, past purchases, or engagement levels. Send targeted emails that recommend relevant products, articles, or resources. Incorporate “subscription marketing strategy” and “send meaningful emails” to reinforce your value proposition and encourage conversions.

Subscription Marketing Example:

Take a look at this email from the Glossier team, promoting their Valentine’s campaign:

The great news is: with Subify triggers, you’re always on the go with the Shopify marketing tools, so you can easily run your automated emails without installing any additional apps.

7. Referral Programs

Reward current customers for referring new customers to your brand. This subscription marketing strategy not only incentivizes current customers to spread the word about your brand, but also helps build trust with new customers who are referred by someone they know.

 Implement the following strategies for successful referral programs:

  • Incentives for Referrers: Offer incentives or rewards to customers who refer others to your subscription service. This could be in the form of discounts, free months, or exclusive content. Incorporate “referral programs” and “subscription marketing strategy” as secondary keywords in your referral program descriptions to highlight the benefits.
  • Reward Both Referrer and Referee: Provide incentives for both the referrer and the referred customer. This encourages existing customers to refer friends while giving new customers an extra incentive to subscribe. Utilize “subscription marketing examples” and “best subscription marketing strategy” in your referral program communications to illustrate the benefits for both parties.
  • Simplify Referral Process: Make it easy for customers to refer others by providing them with simple and convenient referral tools. Offer unique referral links or personalized codes that can be easily shared. Incorporate “subscription marketing strategy” and “best subscription marketing strategy” in your referral process instructions to guide customers effectively.

Subscription Marketing Example:

For example, the meal kit service HelloFresh offers a referral program where customers can earn credits towards their next box for every friend they refer.

8. Free Trials

Offer a free trial period for your subscription service to give potential customers a chance to try out your products and see the value for themselves. This reduces the barrier to entry for new customers and can help increase sign-ups.

 Consider the following tactics when implementing a free trial model:

  • Clear Trial Period: Clearly define the duration of the free trial, ensuring it provides enough time for users to experience the value of your subscription service. Incorporate “free subscription marketing strategy” and “subscription marketing strategy example” in your trial descriptions to emphasize the offer’s benefits.
  • Showcase Value: During the free trial, highlight the unique features and benefits of your subscription service. Provide access to exclusive content or premium features that are only available to trial users. Use “free subscription marketing strategy” and “subscription marketing examples” in your trial communications to emphasize the value users can experience.
  • Seamless Conversion Process: Make it easy for trial users to convert into paying subscribers. Streamline the subscription process, and offer incentives or discounts for those who upgrade at the end of the trial period.

Subscription Marketing Example:

Think of Netflix for instance; as a streaming subscription company, Netflix offers a one-month free trial for all new subscribers.

9. Bundling

Offer discounted bundles or packages that include multiple products or services. This subscription marketing strategy not only incentivizes customers to make a larger purchase but also helps showcase the range of products available from your brand.

Consider the following tactics for effective bundling:

  • Combine Complementary Products: Create bundled packages that include multiple products or services that complement each other. This allows subscribers to access a variety of offerings at a discounted price. Incorporate “subscription marketing strategy” and “best subscription marketing strategy” in your bundle descriptions to emphasize the value and savings.
  • Highlight Cost Savings: Clearly communicate the cost savings and benefits of purchasing the bundled package compared to buying each item individually. Use “subscription marketing strategy” and “best subscription marketing strategy” in your messaging to reinforce the value proposition and encourage conversions.

Subscription Marketing Example:

For example, the pet food brand Chewy offers discounted bundles of different types of dog food, which encourages customers to try out different products from the brand.

10. Limited-Time Offers for Urgency

Create a sense of urgency and scarcity by offering limited-time discounts or exclusive deals that are only available for a short period. This encourages potential customers to act quickly, as they don’t want to miss out on the offer.

Consider these tactics to effectively use limited-time offers:

  • Flash Sales: Periodically offer time-limited discounts or promotions to create a sense of urgency for potential subscribers. Incorporate “subscription marketing strategy” and “best subscription marketing strategy” in your flash sale announcements to emphasize the limited availability and encourage immediate action.
  • Seasonal or Holiday Offers: Align your limited-time offers with relevant holidays or seasons. Create

Subscription Marketing Example:

For example, Pura Vida Bracelets offers a limited-time 50% off deal for their subscription service for the first month, which encourages new customers to sign up.

11. Personalized Packaging

Use personalized packaging to surprise and delight your customers, creating a memorable unboxing experience.

Subscription Marketing Example:

The subscription coffee service Atlas Coffee Club includes postcards with information about the coffee’s origin and culture and their packaging features designs inspired by the coffee’s country of origin.

12. Subscription Gifting

Allow customers to gift your subscription service to friends or family, creating a new revenue stream and expanding your customer base.

  • Gamification: Create a game or challenge related to your product that encourages engagement and loyalty among your customers.

Subscription Marketing Examples:

  1. For example, the book subscription service Book of the Month allows customers to gift subscriptions to others, which can help attract new customers to the service. Also…isn’t it just sweet?
  2. Have you heard of Beautylish? this online retailer offers a “Lucky Bag” promotion where customers pay $75 for a mystery bag filled with beauty products worth over $150. This tactic has also been used by brands like Sephora, which offers a Beauty Insider program that rewards customers with points for their purchases and offers special perks for reaching certain levels.

13. Chatbots

Use chatbots on your website or social media channels to provide personalized recommendations and customer service. This helps create a more engaging and interactive experience for customers, and can also help drive sales by offering relevant product suggestions.

Subscription Marketing Example:

For example, the skincare brand Kiehl’s uses a chatbot on their website to recommend products based on customers’ skin concerns.

14. Set Brand Apart from Competitors

In a crowded subscription market, it’s crucial to differentiate your brand from competitors.

Consider the following strategies to set your brand apart:

  • Unique Value Proposition: Clearly articulate the unique value proposition of your subscription service. Highlight what makes it different, better, or more valuable than other offerings in the market. Incorporate “subscription marketing strategy” and “best subscription marketing strategy” in your messaging to emphasize your competitive advantage.
  • Exceptional Customer Service: Provide exceptional customer service to differentiate yourself from competitors. Respond promptly to inquiries, address concerns, and make the subscription experience as seamless as possible. Incorporate “subscription marketing strategy” and “best subscription marketing strategy” in your customer service interactions to reinforce your commitment to customer satisfaction.
  • Exclusive Benefits or Features: Offer exclusive benefits or features that are not available with other subscription services. This could include early access to new content, personalized recommendations, or unique perks.

15. Use Existing Customers as Evangelists

Your existing customers can be your most powerful advocates. Implement strategies to turn them into evangelists for your subscription service:

  • Customer Testimonials: Encourage satisfied customers to provide testimonials that highlight the value and benefits they’ve gained from your subscription. Share these testimonials on your website, social media, and email campaigns. Incorporate “subscription marketing strategy” and “subscription marketing examples” in your requests for testimonials to align with your marketing objectives.
  • Referral Programs: Implement a referral program that incentivizes existing customers to refer friends and family to your subscription service. Offer rewards or discounts for successful referrals. Leverage “referral programs” and “best subscription marketing strategy” as secondary keywords in your referral program communications to reinforce the benefits of participating.
  • User-Generated Content: Encourage customers to share their experiences with your subscription service on social media. Create branded hashtags and ask customers to use them when sharing their content. Engage with and reshare their posts to amplify their positive experiences. Utilize “subscription marketing strategy” and “best subscription marketing strategy” in your social media interactions to further promote your brand.

16. Loyalty Program for Subscriber Retention

A loyalty program can help retain subscribers and foster long-term relationships. Consider the following strategies when creating a loyalty program:

  • Reward Point System: Implement a reward point system that allows subscribers to accumulate points for various actions, such as renewing their subscription, referring friends, or engaging with your content. Use “subscription marketing strategy” and “best subscription marketing strategy” as secondary keywords in your loyalty program descriptions to highlight its benefits.
  • Exclusive Benefits: Offer exclusive benefits to loyal subscribers, such as early access to new features, special discounts, or personalized recommendations. Utilize “subscription marketing examples” and “best subscription marketing strategy” in your program communications to showcase the unique advantages of being a loyal subscriber.
  • Tiered Rewards: Create different tiers within your loyalty program, each with escalating benefits. Encourage subscribers to ascend to higher tiers by engaging more with your subscription service. Incorporate “subscription marketing strategy” and “best subscription marketing strategy” in your tiered rewards messaging to emphasize the value of progression.

17. SMS Marketing

SMS marketing can be an effective way to directly reach and engage with your customers. Consider the following strategies for SMS marketing:

  • Personalized Messages: Send personalized and relevant SMS messages to subscribers based on their preferences, behavior, or purchase history. Use “subscription marketing strategy” and “best subscription marketing strategy” in your SMS messages to reinforce your marketing objectives and encourage action.
  • Exclusive Offers: Provide exclusive offers or time-limited promotions through SMS messages. This creates a sense of exclusivity and urgency, encouraging subscribers to take immediate action. Utilize “subscription marketing examples” and “best subscription marketing strategy” in your SMS promotions to entice subscribers and drive conversions.

18. Engage with your customers on social media

Engaging with your customers on social media is crucial for building brand awareness and fostering a community around your subscription service. Consider the following strategies for social media engagement:

  • Respond to Comments and Messages: Actively monitor your social media accounts and promptly respond to comments, messages, and mentions from your customers. This shows that you value their input and care about their experience. Incorporate “subscription marketing strategy” and “best subscription marketing strategy” in your social media responses to reinforce your marketing objectives.
  • Encourage User-Generated Content: Encourage your subscribers to create and share user-generated content related to your subscription service. This can include reviews, testimonials, unboxing videos, or creative uses of your product. Utilize “subscription marketing examples” and “best subscription marketing strategy” in your social media calls-to-action to inspire user-generated content.


Are you feeling the stress of running a subscription brand? Are you constantly worrying about acquiring new customers and retaining existing ones? It’s time to take a deep breath and remember why you started your business in the first place. With the right subscription marketing strategy in place, you can save your subscription brand and…your sanity.
The key is to think outside the box and find ways to create a memorable, emotional connection with your audience. By doing so, you can build a loyal community of subscribers who will be eager to recommend your brand to their friends and family. So don’t be afraid to take risks and try something new – the rewards can be truly extraordinary!
Don’t worry, you’re not alone in this. With Subify, you can always fly high!

About Us

We are a Shopify subscription app built by a team of experts who work together to provide service, support, and knowledge to partners, entrepreneurs, and store owners.

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