Annie Taylor Lebel, a cartoonist at Full Tilt Features, is concerned about how to generate an income via [RSS] syndication. I think that Annie is too quick to dismiss the inclusion of advertising in the RSS feed. After all, I found her question via Lockergnome’s RSS Resource – and the Lockergnome RSS feeds carry advertising.
But there are definitely some problems to overcome. I’m a believer in advertising via RSS, but I also believe that you need to manage your ratio of ads to content. Fortunately, Full Tilt has multiple cartoonists and could group several strips together to maintain a good ad/content ratio. And maybe I’m an idealist, but I wouldn’t be concerned about competition from the likes of tapestry. I think they can be reasoned with – once you provide an alternative.
I’d try a few alternatives: an ad supported feed with up to date strips from multiple cartoonists, an ad supported feed with weekly delivery of a single strip, and a subscription feed. The objective is to provide a good enough feed with advertising for the frugal and a reasonably priced alternative for the advertising adverse.