The traditional model for reprints, including e-prints and content licensing/syndication, has mostly been one article at a time. CFE Media is overhauling that model with ContentStream, a software-as-a-service platform that aggregates a media brand's content, makes it searchable by a number of parameters and puts it into a format that transfers easily to a marketer's content management system. CFE then licenses a package of already produced content to marketers for a monthly fee.
With marketing automation systems to feed, marketers need much more content than before, and ContentStream has been built with volume in mind. Steve Rourke, co-founder of CFE, said he has sold ContentStream services to marketers for multiple thousands of dollars per month, with the cost depending on the number of content pieces desired; marketers pay in advance for a full year.
“These deals generate annual subscription fees, and the companies to whom we've sold [the service] are buying a large number of articles,” Rourke said.
ContentStream can also open the door to custom content services, Rourke said. “Our preferred model is a hybrid that provides a high volume of previously developed, relevant content in conjunction with custom content to fill any gaps that remain,” he said. CFE Media spent two-and-a-half years developing the technology to license articles, white papers, blogs and videos from its three media brands—Consulting & Specifying Engineer, Control Engineering and Plant Engineering—to marketing clients. CFE is now launching a program, ContentStream for Publishers, for other media companies.
ContentStream for Publishers is being offered for $40,000, followed by a revenue share. For the one-time, upfront fee, publishers get initial setup of the system, a training class for their sales teams, marketing materials and guidance on how to identify potential customers, Rourke said.
Marketer clients can use the licensed content in multiple ways, including the email campaigns typically fueled by marketing automation, on websites and in social media, he said. Because of the way the content is formatted, the marketer cannot edit it in any way, and the logo of the media brand that generated the piece automatically appears wherever the content is used.