Announcing the Infinibee Plan and Other Premium Changes
To paraphrase Teen Talk Barbie, pricing is hard. Not “P versus NP” hard, but here at the Beehive we’ve gone through seemingly every possible permutation on a revamp of the premium plans, as the daily beemail subscribers can attest. 
Here’s what we landed on after much hand-wringing and internal debate:
Tenet the first: You can still use Beeminder for free. (Assuming you keep your datapoints on track, of course.) And not a crippled or time-limited trial version, but real beeminding. We think Beeminder can quite literally be life-changing and have no plans to put the core awesomeness behind a paywall. Commit-wall , yes, but not a paywall.
Tenet the second: We want to get most serious users onto a paid plan. If you are getting noticeable value from Beeminder, it should be a no-brainer to at least get on the cheapest paid plan. We’re calling that plan Infinibee because we decided to use the number of active goals as the simplest proxy for how much value you’re getting. [UPDATE: We meant to say number of goals you create, not just active goals. In the meantime we decided active goals is probably better. We’ll delete this update when “active” is actually true.] Subscribing to Infinibee gives you an unlimited number of goals — otherwise limited to 3 — of any type except custom. Starting now, the free plan limits you to Do More goals, weight goals, and any autodata goals using our integration partners.
Tenet the third: Power user features go in the middle plan. Some features take a lot of time and effort to build and maintain. Auto-ratcheting, weekends off, and fully custom goals, to name a few. But they’re really good features if you’re a hard-core Beeminder user. Not surprising since we built a lot of them for ourselves or based directly on feedback from you. They’re not essential to basic beeminding (tracking your goals with the credible threat of charging you money) and can even be counter-productive to show to newbees. We’re calling this middle plan Bee Plus, because it gets you these power user features on top of the core Beeminder service.
Tenet the fourth: Revenue-impacting features go in the expensive plan. Some people hear about Beeminder and say “that would be really cool if only it did X”, where X is something that would mean that Beeminder wouldn’t make any money and therefore wouldn’t be around for that person to use it. The three most common values of X are:
- “If only I could choose the starting pledge! (And set it to something really high so that it’s immediately so motivating that I never derail)”
- “If only I could just use it to track my goals without this silly pledging business!”
- “If only I could have the money go to charity!”
The first two have been premium features for a long time. Today we’ve added a partial charity option. We’ll continue to call this plan Beemium: it’s the fanciest plan and includes everything in Infinibee and Bee Plus as well.
“All your existing goals are grandfathered”
Tenet the fifth: People who are currently subscribers should be happy about any changes. Existing premium subscribers can keep their current plans as they are indefinitely and, as thank-you for supporting us early, we’ll be sending you discount coupons for the new plans. (And even if you’re not already on a premium plan, all your existing goals are grandfathered.)
So, with those tenets of liberté, égalité, and fraternité, let’s talk about the new Beeminder premium plans.
A Couple Carrots After All
Actually, we should first mention a tenet that got thrown under the bus. Well, a little bit under the bus. Thrown under a bicycle maybe. Remember our No Dangling Carrots Principle? Most of you don’t, since that was over three years ago. But back when we first introduced premium plans we wrote “we do not intend to hold important features as dangling carrots.” Well, here we are, dangling carrots in front of you. Not many. Mainly the carrot of unlimited goals. And the weekends-off feature is probably a violation of No Dangling Carrots, since it’s just a checkbox. We can’t claim that one’s too confusing for newbees.
What do we have to say for ourselves? Well, like Beeminder, reality is a harsh mistress. At the beginning of 2016 we hard-committed to making Beeminder revenue grow by the end of the year so Beeminder can keep existing for many years to come. This is part of that plan.
But enough of that, let’s talk about these plans!
Core Beeminder ($0/month)
We’ll start with the non-premium plan, just as a reminder of all the goodies that are still entirely un-paywalled.
- Track up to 3 goals, unlimited data
- Monetary commitment device
- Cap pledges
- Adjust goal difficulty on the fly (road dial)
- Web, iOS, and Android apps
- Email bot, Slack bot
- Dozens of autodata integrations
- Yellow Brick Road to your goal
- IFTTT, Zapier, and custom API integration
- Scheduled breaks
- Fancy statistics, graph features
- Supporters for social accountability
- Escalating reminders (aka Zeno polling)
- Public and private graphs
- Data import and export
- Dead man’s switch
- Many, many more obscure features
This is the plan that we hope is a no-brainer if you’ve read this far. It has all of core Beeminder and no limit to number of goals and types of goals.
- Unlimited goals (otherwise limited to 3)
- Unlimited types of goals (otherwise limited to Do More goals, weight goals, and autodata goals)
- Auto-canceling subscription
“You don’t have to remember to cancel your subscription”
We’re quite proud of our auto-canceling subscription feature (which applies to all plans). If $4/month had you on the fence we hope that not having to worry about remembering to cancel (should Beeminder somehow fail to enthrall you) will push you right off. And especially if you’re a startup founder yourself we hope you’ll hear us out on the virtue of auto-canceling subscriptions.
Bee Plus ($16/month)
This is the power user plan. The fanciest fanciness is here, things that might confuse newbees or matter to the most hard core folks.
- Autoratchet (automatically trim excess safety buffer)
- Custom goals (adjust things like how a goal aggregates multiple datapoints)
- SMS bot
- Weekends-off checkbox (no derailments on weekends)
- Road Editor (arbitrary changes to the yellow brick road, past and future, subject to the akrasia horizon)
Finally, our VIP plan, which, in addition to unlimited goals and power user features has features that directly impact Beeminder’s revenue.
- Option to donate half your derailments to charity (Watsi, Give Directly, EFF)
- Fully pledgeless goals ($0 pledge cap)
- Pledge shortcircuiting (jump to any pledge level)
- Access to our developer chatroom
We’re very impressed with people who have value for shortcircuiting. We’re not sure we do ourselves! Beemium subscribers are highly akratic and have the foresight to know what will motivate them. We’re highly akratic, no question there, but we’re always a bit delusional about it. “Maybe this time $5 will be enough to keep me on track!” We’re pretty enamored with our exponential pledge schedule but some of our most hardcore users can save money by paying for Beemium so they can jump straight to commitment contracts that they know will keep them on track indefinitely.
Since Beemium is so super elite we’re also letting those folks hang out in our developer chat room where you can ask us questions and often get an immediate response.
(Speaking of personal attention, let us now pause for a moment of silence for the Beekeeper plan, which we’re officially retiring. We’ve been phasing it out for a long time. We’ll focus on what we’re best at — building very nerdy tools — and leave lifecoaching to the lifecoaches.)
Think these are too expensive? Too cheap? Think our mother is cheap? Tell us about it in the comments or an email! Or subscribe to Beemium and tell us to our virtual faces ;-)
 Thank you, daily beemail people, for the brilliant feedback! You had a big impact on the new premium plans.
 By commit-wall we mean having to enter a credit card at some point (Beeminder can’t be a credible threat until you do) but not paying unless you derail on your goal
Image credit: Ms Travel Bee