John Battelle just wrote a fascinating blog post — roughly about the economics of online magazine publications… and so here I am adverting your attention to it. He assumes:
you are going to both charge a sub fee, and include ads, which most “traditional” publications do
This is in stark contrast to my opinion of the space (which has been largely influenced by not only John Battelle himself, but also by a comment I once read made — maybe a decade ago? — by Neil Budde [about the time he departed from WSJ Online] regarding precisely this current hot topic of “native advertising”).
In my opinion, you will not charge a subscription fee for readers to read, but rather only for writers to write (cf. “Freedom and the Art of Weblog Maintenance“). Indeed, John Battelle also remarks that this has already become commonplace:
If you want to sell your publication on the Big Guys’ platforms, you have to play by their rules, which means you turn over 30% of your circulation revenues.