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High Price Poor Quality Death Spiral | Strategic Pricing Solutions

For my daily news, I subscribe to the Wall Street Journal, Miami Herald, New York Times, Washington Post, and the Florida Times-Union.  Interestingly, I am likely to cancel the Times-Union soon because it charges the highest price and delivers the lowest quality.  It is an excellent example of a business that tries to save itself as markets change by cutting costs and raising prices.  However, the Times-Union does not appear to be getting healthier.  More likely the paper is circling in a death spiral.  The good news is we can all learn what not to do in those situations.

Each publication I subscribe to has a different value proposition for me.  I have enjoyed the WSJ throughout my career for its coverage of business news and for what I perceive is an unbiased view of economics and politics.  I read it daily.  I have been reading the Times and Post online for the past several years for their more liberal points of view and counterpoints to the Journal’s positions.  The Herald provides sports coverage of the Miami Heat, Dolphins, and Hurricanes, all of whom I follow.  The Times-Union provides Jacksonville area local news as well as national and international news.  Each publication delivers the service I am looking for to some degree, but when we compare the value of that service to price, my local paper seriously under-delivers.

The quality of the Times-Union is poor in my opinion.  There are typically four sections, Front, Sports, Metro, and Life.  Each section is usually eight pages, with about half of the space taken by ads.  The amount of content is limited, paragraphs are sometimes repeated verbatim, editors regularly fail to correct typos, the grammar used by the local writers is often incorrect, and the editorials seem to regurgitate trite conventional wisdom rather than providing any real insight.  These problems seem to be getting worse, while the price has been increasing.

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High Price Poor Quality Death Spiral.