Maximum PC Subsribers: Are You Paying Too Much?

There’s only one computer magazine that I subscribe to, and I’ve been a subscriber for 12 years: Maximum PC (which started life as boot). I think the magazine is fantastic, and I trust the coverage I read in it – there are too many magazines on the market today that do little more than re-publish press releases with a few words changed. If the gang at Maximum PC tells me something sucks, there’s a really good chance it sucks. I think so highly of the magazine that I someday hope to write an article for the magazine as well (it’s a little dream I have).

My goodwill toward the magazine was tested the other day when I was filling out my subscriber card to renew, like I do every year, and I decided to check their Web site for some reason to see what the normal online price was. Below is my subscriber card (after some heavy use of the eraser tool)…$34.95 USD is what I pay for a year’s worth of the magazine, and this is the renewal price for current subscribers.

So imagine my surprise when I checked the site and saw that someone getting a brand new subscription was paying $5 less than I was…and if they signed up for two years, they’d save $20. When I renew my subscription, I don’t even get an option for two years! So it seems that I shouldn’t be renewing, I should be buying a new subscription each year. Amazingly, this isn’t an online vs. offline thing: when I checked my renewal rates using the Web site, I was offered the same “great” deal: $34.95 for a one-year renewal, and $54.95 for a two-year renewal.

Ultimately this isn’t big money, but it goes to show you that you shouldn’t blindly trust when a company is giving you a “good deal” as a “valued repeat customer” – check into it, and you might be surprised…

  • ignar

    Wow, I stopped subscribing it a couple years ago, but I’ve been a fan of the magazine (since Boot days), and I don’t think I’ve paid more than $12/year ever. Shop around. There gotta be better deals for Canadians as well.

  • ignar,
    Unfortunately for us Canucks, paying 2x more than Americans is pretty normal for magazines. I don’t mind paying for it, though of course paying less would always be nice. 🙂

  • smileyguy

    I felt compelled to write this: the editorial staff and the marketing staff do not intermingle of MaximumPC. The parent company of MaximumPC, Future, has put these stupid policies in place I would assume. I’m sure that Will Smith and the rest of the editorial staff would love to reward loyal subscribers, but they can’t tell marketing how to do their job, just like marketing doesn’t influence what gets reviewed or how it’s reviewed.

  • smileyguy,
    Yeah, I understand how editorial and advertising/publishing are kept separate, but ultimately they’re all a team working together to put out a magazine named Maximum PC. Everyone does their part, and when one part of that team drops the ball, it makes everyone look bad.