This morning eDiets announced their 4th quarter earnings for 2001 -- profits galore -- but my eye was struck by the bit which read, "Revenue growth was driven by growth in program attendance, which reached 10 million in fiscal 2001..." I contacted eDiet's Manager Marketing Communications Merilee Kern for clarification.
Were the 10 million free registered users? Paid users? Weeks of paid membership sold?
She replied, "It was determined that at on any given week throughout the year of 2001, eDiets had an AVERAGE of 191,000 unique paid members active. So, the 10 million was derived by multiplying 191,000 average "membership weeks" by 52 weeks in the year, totaling almost 10 million (9,932,00 to be exact)."
eDiets didn't pick this method of reporting figures to confuse us content folks, but to strike a pose in comparison to competitor WeightWatchers who publicly measure their sales the same way.
Interestingly the virtual world is catching up to the real world fast -- counted by weeks of attendance eDiets is 42% of WeightWatchers' size.
If you're interesting in learning how eDiets did it, check out our Case Study from last August, eDiets Profitably Sells Millions of $65 Diet Counseling Subscriptions Online :