ComiXology has had their share of bad press lately, with the Amazon buyout and the shutting down of in-app purchasing. To counter some of those woes with the public they’re running a promotion called Summer Reading, offering one free comic every day until June 14th. Go to their homepage and click on this fancy banner at the top. No, it’s not a live banner and we’re not affiliated with ComiXology.
I popped by to see the first comic and it was Detective Comics 871, the first issue of The Black Mirror story. Day Two features Magnus, Robot Fighter issue 1, the newest relaunch. It’s not hard to see a pattern here: offer the first part of a different story every day and try to get new subscribers for the rest of the story. Give the razor for free to sell the blades. A good strong sales strategy. Maybe it’s just me in Southern Ontario but summer lasts about three months and not twenty days. Perhaps they mean after the twenty free comics you’ll buy issues all summer…
Of course this means users will have to use the website to make purchases, which isn’t a big read. And free is great. But digital readers need to be aware of one key fact: you’re paying to use the media, not own it, and it can be revoked at any time. Really you’re renting, which is great for the majority of readers who only want to go through the material once.
It’s a great opportunity to sample a variety of comics for free and then go to your comic shop and buy the trade.