Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Mobile media offerings (3): Thrillist mobile app extends its e-newsletter brands, builds its audience

Thrillist, the web and e-newsletter media company that targets a young and mostly male audience with food, drink and entertainment news/information has released an iPhone app that extends its brand and serves as a great example of the promotional power of mobile media for publishers.
Thrillist is a media firm that specializes in daily e-newsletters sent free daily to registered members. The newsletters contain what Thrillist calls under-the-radar goodness. "We're talking absinthe-only cocktail spots, eateries that dish up BBQ Rattlesnake Salad and Reindeer in Bourbon Sauce, and ATMs whose currency is marijuana -- handy, although after making a withdrawal, you'll feel even more paranoid about the stocking repercussions of consuming Santa's only friend."

The company maintains fifteen editions, each covering a U.S. city's social life (plus London, England), and will launch coverage for San Diego and Denver soon, according to its website.

The app is free to download and immediately requires the user to register with the site so that content can be customized.

The upside for the publisher is growing those lists. It's such a simple concept, but B2B media firms would rather, I suppose, spend thousands on those overseas phone rooms and mass mailings, right? Now Thrillist is not a B2B, of course -- but that is what I thought about after launching the Thrillist app for the first time. Surely the gathering of all that information is valuable?

Left: Registration page; Middle: map content; Right: monetize it, guys!

The other thing about the app that struck me as that ad -- love it. But then again, as a former publisher, advertising has not become the dirty word that it has for many. It's still way to early to judge how users are reacting, but the four early reviews are all positive. This one was very thoughtful:

"This app is a good compliment to other restaurant/city apps. It generally gives good suggestions on restaurants and bars and when I'm looking for something near me, but don't have anything specific in mind, it's the first app I check out. I've been happy with the information on the Thrillist app. The little blurbs are informative and tend to cut to the important info. I also like how the blurbs are dated, so you know the info isn't old."