Subbly's Subscription School: Learn How To Start a Subscription Box Business

Subscription School

Welcome back to campus!

We here at Subbly aim not only to facilitate your business success, but also to guide your strategy with tips and tools that we’ve seen work over the years.

With our Subscription School, we’d like to introduce a central, dynamic hub for our blog posts, links and videos that cover the various phases of the subscription biz (with amazingly curated gifs!).

:sunglasses::tv: Scroll to the bottom to see some rocking educational videos for you to sink your teeth into!

The content is designed to be both in depth and easy to reference, so we hope that students of all levels can get the most out of their learning experience. And yes, we’re here for office hours should you need them!

So, in whatever stage of your subscription journey you may be— beginner, intermediate, or postdoc— we’d like to help you move swiftly from the learning curve to be a subscription scholar by learning with us at our very own subscription school.

GETTING OFF THE GROUND

General concepts, solidifying the basics, and finding your customers

:fire: How To Start a Subscription Box Business
A 12 part series with every part of the process covered, from the twinkle of your idea to finding ways to sustainably scale up your budding operations. Essential reading for our freshman matriculants. Subscription School has begun!

Practical Solutions for Common Challenges in Subscription Business
A great guide to that offers solutions to the often hastily executed sub biz starting barriers: pricing, fulfillment scaling, monthly scheduling practices, and excellent customer support.

4 Pillars of Communication and How They Help Your Business Boom
Techniques to help your communication be purposeful, caring, timely, a bit creative...all the advice that will help for effective information exchange and swift need or problem resolution. Excellent for building your business/branding strategy from its core values, as well as assessing whether such values were met at later points in your business.

How To Set Up A Pre-launch Page For Your Subscription Box Service
All about creating this highly investment-worthy tool to help determine various aspects of your customer base/interest. The information you gain here will help inform your business and marketing strategy before you are ready to push that product.

PROCUREMENT & SUPPLIERS

Finding the goods, stocking those shelves with the goods, and the deals that brought them there

The Art of Finding Products and Suppliers – 11 Unexpected Places to Look
Friendly suggestions for some obvious and some not so obvious sources of goods and goods providers. A result of reader input!

Product Procurement: Choosing the Products for Subscription Boxes
A generalist primer on how to optimally pick what your box is and how to fill it. Covers the conceptual principles underpinning such decisions as well, such as presentation, story, and customer context.

:fire:Procurement: Sourcing Products for Your Subscription Boxes
An in-depth manual and resource for the steps related to defining and finding your products. Emphasis on the pros/cons of using free products, as well as on the various venues to find the exact products that inspire a great business (get your suitcase ready!).

3 Cold Email Templates to Land New Suppliers
It really is “how you say it” that matters. Here are a few tried-and-true templates for you to break through with the other busy side of the equation, product suppliers. Also, we cover how to create and manage supplier databases with paid and selfmade solutions. Sometimes school is about being spoon fed the answers as well.

5 Golden Rules to Govern Your Supplier Negotiations
We all have strategies that work for us individually, but here are a few points to focus your discussions with suppliers on the ultimate goal of reaching a great deal and continuing relationship for both sides. A useful checklist.

PACKAGING DESIGN

The look, the feel, the experience, aaand the price

:fire: Ultimate Guide to Custom Packaging & Design for Subscription Boxes
Dare we say more? An in-depth guide for those going the extra mile for the extra smiles (good on you!), and tips for cost-effective decision making.

Packaging Materials for the Subscription box
How best to protect your baby? A detailed review of the most often used packing materials: bubble wrap, packing peanuts, tissue paper, and crinkle paper. Some thoughts on positioning as well.

The Best Tips on How to Make a Packing List
Don’t leave your customers out to dry! Exorcise the demons from all the terrible product manuals you’ve been cursed with and listen to some of our ideas on giving your customer an enlightening guide to a blessed product experience.

Create an Unforgettable Unboxing Experience
Some thoughts on how to enhance your customer’s birthday present-inspired giddyness, and to channel that energy into input and potential free marketing through call-to-action prompts.

:point_up: Don't forget to join our high quality private Facebook community: Join Here.

FULFILLMENT, LOGISTICS & SHIPPING

Getting the box made and out the door with minimal damage to your pocketbook (and mind)

Which Fulfillment Option is Better, In-house or Outsource?
To outsource, or not to outsource? Suggestions on how to factor the scale of your business and costs/quality control in order to determine the better choice.

Mastering the Internal Operations and Logistics Before Shipping
The bitter medicine that makes all the (good) difference later, especially re: professionalism and dependability. Reference in order to get your data, products, and people organized and running as smoothly as possible.

:fire:Top 10 Ways to Save Money on Shipping
Detailed suggestions we’ve curated for you to nudge down one of your main fixed costs. #balancedbudget

TRANSACTIONS

For orders, yes, and addressing further customer milestone actions and inactions

Communication Basics for a Subscription Business: Transactional Emails 101
Basic principles that should govern the backbone of your customer relationship. BTW, transactional emails include those regular greetings, check-ins, and confirmations you make with the subscriber.

MARKETING

Various strategies to enhance customer recruitment, adoption, and retention with an eye on ROI and minimal cost

Marketing Your Subscription Box – 12 Tips to Get Your First Customers
Essential information to learn key marketing principles (the stats that matter) and setup your marketing strategy with the most common and successful methods. While balancing that marketing budget!

5 Ways to Create Subscription Box Descriptions That Sell
Something to really, really focus on. This is the answer to those cocktail party questions, customer adoption, and a successful image in general. It’s pretty much your 30 second pitch to the world. We’ve listed our thoughts on how best to get the point across with sufficient and compelling evidence.

:fire:Grow Your Customer Base: How to Reach 1,000 Subscribers Without Spending a Dime
Harnessing the positive power of your customers and social media in order to evangelize the virtues of your subscription program. Ok, so you might throw some incentives here and there (giveaways and contests), but you know what we mean...no extra spending.

Refer-a-Friend Marketing: The Timeless Secret to Growing a Subscription Box Business
Further insight into empowering customers to spread the good word, and brief case studies of successful refer-a-friend implementation by the likes of Dollar Shave Club and PayPal.

How to Leverage Instagram Influencer Marketing for Your Subscription Business
We all know about this phenomenon, but we have detailed information on finding the most effective matches for your product, and a few more case studies (BirchBox, Boxed Water) to boot.

OTHER

Here are some additional resources that we wanted to include as part of the Subscription School. Class never ends when it comes to business :smile:

:calendar: Subscription Summit
This is an invaluable subscription conference worth attending. It's the biggest in the US and the knowledge you can gain from this will take your subscription school acquired knowledge to the next level!

VIDEOS

From the Subbly Youtube channel, ask-me-anything sessions and topical insights from veterans of the subscription industry

There you have it! Please visit often as we will most definitely add more articles and videos.

If you don’t see something covered, feel free to reach out to us via twitter or by email. We’ll consider them for future educational content at our subscription school.

:kissing_heart: Don't forget to join us on our high quality private Facebook community: Join Here.

Additionally, we’d be more than happy to welcome you to our Subbly family for more tailored support on every step of your mastery of this discipline. Check out our website to see if we might be a good match for you. Cheers, and rock on!

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