Sunday, April 20, 2014
Press Releases

Entries for the 'Local Media Association News' Category

Awards
The annual Local Media Association Editorial Contest once again elicited fierce competition. The entries were simply phenomenal, and judges certainly had a tough job on their hands. To see the list of winners CLICK HERE.

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By a 91% affirmative vote, we've changed our bylaws to create a new class of membership called "Local Media Members." This new class will allow non-newspaper media companies such as TV stations, radio stations, directory publishers, pure plays, and more, to join the association.

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LMA is out recruiting for its new CareerConnect program in Austin, Texas at the College Newspaper Business & Advertising Managers (CNBAM) convention. With over 300 attendees LMA is booked solid interviewing hiring candidates for LMA members. If you want to know more about the program, or are a graduating senior, more information is available here.

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We are excited to announce the new and improved Best in Digital Media Awards is now open!  New Categories! New Judging Classifications!  

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The voting has begun! Check your email boxes. It will allow non-newspaper media companies such as TV and radio stations to join.

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LMA President Nancy Lane is at the Borrell Local Online Advertising Conference and shared her favorite takeaways from day one.(Left - LMA board member Brandon Erlacher shares the digital agency strategy at The Elkhart (Ind.) Truth.)

 

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Live from the Ohio Newspaper Association Convention - Regarded as one of the nation’s most recognized thinkers on the future of media, Tom Rosenstiel, Executive Director of the American Press Institute, delivered a thought-provoking keynote during today’s luncheon at the Ohio Newspaper Association Convention.

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Live from the Ohio Newspaper Association Convention - A major snowstorm didn’t stop newspaper executives from all over the state from attending the annual convention of the Ohio Newspaper Association. Both GateHouse Ventures President Peter Newton (l) and CEO and founder of the Center for Advertising Effectiveness Joe DeBiak, shared their thoughts during a session on digital agencies.

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The training division of Local Media Association is growing!  We are adding the position of "Training and Development Manager" to our team to accommodate the demand for high quality training delivered to media companies and the business community.

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This Chicago summit has an agenda designed to increase your ad revenue. Hosted by the LMA and The Blinder Group. Book now at special rates with $150 savings.

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In 2013, with a total of 2,185 webinar registrations, we produced 45 free webinars for LMA members and these are the Top 10 most attended. In case you missed some of these webinars, we wanted to pass on the archived links. All are available now for on-demand vieweing. 

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We are thrilled to share the LMA 2013 Annual Report, the first in our organization's history!

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(NetNewsCheck) Some of the nation’s smallest newspapers may not be feeling the ad crunch and circulation drops as harshly as their big city cousins. That doesn’t mean they can afford to ignore the growing migration of their readers to digital...

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Local Media Association is proud to announce the winners of the 2013 Newspaper of the Year contest. These award-winning newspapers displayed top-notch editorial coverage, eye-catching graphic design and prominent advertising layouts, exemplifying creativity and innovation in all areas of the newspaper. Click here to view the winners.

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It was another spectacular year in the 2013 Advertising and Promotions Contest!  Special thanks to everyone who entered. With hundreds of note-worthy entries and fierce competition from across North America, our contest judges certainly had a tough job. We're very excited and extremely proud to announce our 2013 Advertising and Promotions Contest winners.

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The November LMIA report focuses on the subject of social media policies. Take a look at different practices being employed by media companies of various sizes. The report also provides helpful links and examples of several social media policies that might be worth adopting at your company.

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If you were in Chicago, or even if you couldn't be there, you can now download all the presentations from the 2013 Digital Agency Summit.

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Two days dedicated to the best case studies and succesful practices of local-media digital agencies. Register now  for November 6-7 in Chicago.

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Street Fight advisor Rick Robinson served as moderator for a fast moving question & answer discussion on hyperlocal sites. 
The panelists included three hyperlocal website publishers. 

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Two industry professionals, BuzzMachine’s Jeff Jarvis and CBS Local Digital Media President Ezra Kucharz, squared-off in a Street Fight session titled, "Hyperlocal Publishing in Search of Scale."

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The “2013 Street Fight Summit” in NYC has attracted a broad range of participants from media outlets to national retailers to tech companies. The first two summit sessions focused on how to reach, engage and serve consumers.

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tout.comOver 300 of the world’s most progressive R&D partners have gathered in Berlin for the WAN-IFRA World Publishing Expo. Live sessions are being conducted on four different media port stages to showcase many of the new products and services. Media executives are presenting the information in case study formats.

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WAN-IFRALocal Media Association is a proud sponsor of the world’s largest newspaper trade expo taking place in Berlin this week. The expo kicked off  Monday, October 7, with an opening session that was moderated by U.S. media analyst Ken Doctor. Panelists were Mathias Dopfner, CEO, Axel Springer and Andrew Miller, CEO, the Guardian. The event draws 8,000 attendees. Doctor presented his "10 Truths As We Enter 2014.''

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What attendees had to say about the LMA's 2013 Fall Conference.
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Fall ConferenceIf you were there, or even if you missed it, you won't want to miss the great presentations from the 2013 Fall Conference in St. Louis that are available now!

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Sales Certification ProgramThe Advanced Digital-Sales Course has recently been released and it offers tactical approaches to selling digital products and using digital media to increase and capture qualified leads. It prepares an advertising sales professional to present successful and effective advertising solutions that drive client-value and generate measurable sales-results. The course is made up of 26 modules, one is available for viewing by clicking here.

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Clark Gilbert, CEO of Deseret Digital Media and Deseret News, and a well-recognized leader in the industry, has been chosen as the inaugural recipient of the Local Media Association's new "Innovator of the Year" award.
 

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Dan Calhoun photoAnnouncing the 2013 Local Media Association Advertising Director of the Year & Digital Sales Manager of the Year. Advertising Director of the Year Dan Calhoun (l).

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Social Mobile See what all the buzz was about in Chicago! Many of the great presentations from the Social + Mobile Conference are now available for either download or viewing.

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According to Christine Merritt of Google, they are now touting Google+ as the foundation for a business’s web-wide identity.  A big reason for that is the growing reach that Google+ now has.

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In a riveting session, Gian Fulgoni, co-founder of comScore, started his session by talking about how the purchasing funnel has dramatically changed. The traditional funnel was linear starting with awareness, then interest, then desire and ending with action.  Today's funnel is more like a flight map.

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Gordon BorrellIn the opening session of the Social + Mobile Conference Gordon Borrell offered a fascinating view of how the media landscape has morphed over 100 years into what it is today.

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Advanced Digital SalesPart of the LMA's Sales Certification Program, the 26 15-minute module Advanced Digital Sales Certification Course has been released. This custom program was designed by Stephen Warley who has trained more than 5,000 broadcast account executives in selling digital advertising. His fresh perspective brings a wealth of advanced techniques to digital prospecting and sales.

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Gordon Borrell, CEO, Borrell Associates and a LMA board member blogs, "The growth of mobile marketing may be occurring at a rapid clip, but more than 90% of businesses aren’t yet buying it. And those who are, aren’t really spending that much. Why?" And, he poses this question to Gian Fulgoni, chairman and co-founder of comScore. Read more about his response in Borrell's blog.

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Betsy WilsonPhiladelphia-area publisher with strong leadership ties to LMA chosen for the association's most prestigious award (formerly the Dean Lesher award). In 2005, she was elected to chair the Suburban Newspapers of America (now Local Media Association) board of directors. For 12 years, she served LMA and the related Foundation as a board member, marketing committee member and advisor.

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Sports Journalism has changed and the ESPN local sites in Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, Dallas and New York are a potent example of this with their High School and Prep sports coverage seamlessly woven with news and analysis of the local pro and college teams in each market. Hear how two ESPN journalists are covering the local sports teams on Twitter.

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Read the blog that Peter Krasilovsky, VP, BIA/Kelsey posted about our 2013 Innovation Mission report. Krasilovsky writes, "I personally learned a lot about native advertising, digital ad agencies and Twitter ad products. In fact, the report is a field guide to the key things that small publishers (and in fact, everyone) should be thinking about in terms of their digital and mobile transition."

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It begins this week! LMA members can attend for free from the comfort of their own office. Three days of great webinars focused on how to increase ad sales, managing your sales team, and improving your social and email marketing skills.

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ORDER TODAY LMA Members & Association Partners - $379 Non-Members - $499   "This year it...

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We've just added July 29th for the start of the next training. Did you know that over $6 billion was spent on local search in 2012? Sign-up now and triple your search revenue!

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Kevin Ma has again been recognized by Local Media Association as its Journalist of the Year, as judged by the faculty at the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University.

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Newsrooms across North America received the much awaited results of the Local Media Association 2012 Editorial Contest last month. Metroland Media Group led all companies with an impressive 129 awards.

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Brock Berry, VP at AdTaxi Networks opened up The Denver Post’s boardroom to the group and launched into an overview of AdTaxi.

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Peter Krasilovsky, a senior analyst with BIA/Kelsey, made a presentation to the Innovation Mission group that focused on the importance of personalization and verticalization in the coming years.

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Dan Schaub, Corporate Director of Audience Development for The McClatchy Company kicked off the Innovation Mission with a presentation titled “Audience Strategies: 2013 and beyond.” See McClatchy's Top 10 Recommendations for 2013.

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Are you in California? We are sending Amie Stein, our Training and Development Director, to the Bay Area in California in late-June to train sales professionals to be experts in Google AdWords.

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We've re-launched our Sales Certification Program with the release of the all new Fundamentals Media Course. This self-paced course consists of eight 30-minute video modules that prepare an advertising sales professional to successfully present effective advertising solutions that drive client-value and generate measurable sales-results.

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On June 4, some of the most influential people and companies in the business will gather at Street Fight West 2013  to address both the promises and the challenges of the local media space. You'll want to be there. 

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Chicago - From the Monetizing Social session with Shannon Kinney & Bev Crandon from Dream Local Digital: Selling digital agency services is not the same as selling advertising. You are selling marketing. This requires a different skill set.

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The OC Register’s strategy has certainly raised eyebrows in the industry. No one else is hiring 120 newsroom employees. Some have called it flat out crazy. Deputy editor Rob Curley took the stage today to explain and defend this strategy. It was an outstanding and inspiring presentation.

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Awards
The annual Local Media Association Editorial Contest once again elicited fierce competition. The entries were simply phenomenal, and judges certainly had a tough job on their hands. To see the list of winners CLICK HERE.

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You won't want to miss this event! On April 18, at 3 p.m. ET we will host a groundbreaking webinar -- "Rebuild Your Core While You Reinvent Your Business Model." This webinar is free to all members and association partners.

Chris Lee, president of Deseret Digital Media, will present the key takeaways from a recent Harvard Business Review article, "Two Routes to Resilience," written by Clark Gilbert (CEO of Deseret Digital Media and Deseret News), Matthew Eyring and Richard N. Foster. At the heart of the issue is the notion that there are two transformations underway in our industry... READ MORE>>

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Week-long study tour includes visits to Facebook and Plug and Play Tech CenterInnovastion Mission

A terrific agenda has been planned for the 2013 Local Media Foundation Innovation Mission. A visit to Facebook headlines the list of innovative media and technology company meetings this year along with The Plug and Play Tech Center, one of Silicon Valley's leading start-up business accelerators. 

Innovation Mission attendees will also meet with top executives from the San Francisco Chronicle, The McClatchy Company and The Denver Post/AdTaxi. In addition to these confirmed meetings, Twitter and Craigslist have also been invited; we are working on final confirmation details with each of them.

Attendance is limited to the first 24 people that register and we expect to sell out! READ MORE>>

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Lindsey Leisher Estes photo

Local Media Association is pleased to announce the hire of Lindsey Leisher Estes as their new Sales & Marketing Manager. Estes recently served as the event manager at Catholic Relief Services where she worked for the past year. Estes started on March 11. READ MORE>>

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Al Cupo, Vice President, Local Media Association

Dan Levy photo

Meet the Disruptor: Facebook

Dan Levy, Facebook’s director of small business, heads up their initiatives to tap into the SMB advertising market. Levy discussed how Facebook is working directly, and through partners, to serve the marketing needs of local SMBs.

Levy began his presentation by telling the audience ”word of mouth marketing matters.” READ MORE>>

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Al Cupo, Vice President, Local Media Association

Greg Stuart photo

Greg Stuart, CEO, Mobile Marketing Association, kicked-off day two of the Borrell Online Advertising Conference. Stuart’s keynote presentation focused on three areas of mobile marketing- the local marketers state of mobile, MMA’s perspective on mobile and ways that local media companies can capitalize on the major uptick in mobile marketing. READ MORE>>

 

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Al Cupo, Vice President, Local Media Association

The theme of this year’s Borrell Local Advertising Conference is ”Meet the Disruptors.” Over 500 media professionals from all areas of local media traveled to NYC this week to hear from terrific speakers, network with other attendees and spend time with industry suppliers.

Seth Godin photo

Marketing expert Seth Godin presented the keynote address, “What Should Local Media Do?” During his thirty-minute presentation, Godin offered his perspective on what’s happening now in traditional media and how these challenges can lead to tremendous opportunities. READ MORE>>

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2013 Revenue Summit - May 15-17
Chicago, Illinois – Avenue Crowne Plaza Hotel

LMA has once again partnered with the Blinder Group to assemble a top notch, revenue-centric agenda for a three day Revenue Summit that has an uppermost priority - sending participants home with immediately actionable, NEW revenue generating strategies designed to drive top line growth and increase bottom line profits.

Attendees photo

Summit Highlights

Setting the tone for the gathering will be opening keynote speaker Kirk Davis, President & COO of GateHouse Media, who will talk about a subject he knows well: Driving Revenue at Local Media Companies. In day two’s keynote, Todd Handy of Deseret Digital will discuss how they have revamped their telesales division and are now dramatically growing revenue in both print and digital. READ MORE>>

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By Nancy Lane, president, Local Media Association

INMA NewsMedia Outlook 2013

Earl Wilkinson photo

"The culture of the print bundle is toxic and corrupt and needs to end!", proclaimed Earl Wilkinson, CEO & Executive Director of INMA, during the opening keynote address at the 2013 Mega-Conference in New Orleans today.

Wilkinson shared many of the key takeaways from his recent outlook report during this lively and fast-paced session. READ MORE>>

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Local Media Association, Borrell Associates and Local Search Association Team Up for this Premier Industry Event

Laurel Lane photo

The focus will be on revenue when three of the industry’s most progressive organizations come together for a social + mobile gathering.

The Sheraton Chicago O’Hare Airport Hotel will host the inaugural Social + Mobile – Show Me the Money! event on August 21 -22. Day one will be devoted to social strategies and day two will finish up with mobile. The two areas are intersecting more and more and this will be addressed throughout the program.

“Social and mobile represent two of the biggest opportunity areas for local media companies,” said Nancy Lane, president of Local Media Association, “We created this event to identify the most promising revenue models and case studies. The collaboration with Borrell Associates and Local Search Association will enable us to identify the leaders across all media platforms.”

The event is perfect for anyone charged with growing mobile and social revenue at a local media company.

“Lots of conferences bring ideas,” said Gordon Borrell, CEO of Borrell Associates, “but the smartest media managers place more value on viable business models. This conference offers a laser focus on defining the revenue-producing models that work for social and mobile ventures.”

"Bringing three industry leaders together for an event like this is exciting," said Neg Norton, president, Local Search Association, "This joint effort will allow us to identify the best in the business when it comes to generating mobile and social revenue. It's going to be a great few days and well worth the investment to attend."

The program will be announced in late March at which time registration will be open. The conference is expected to sell out quickly and is being capped at 300 attendees.

Sponsor and exhibit opportunities will also be available. Details will be coming soon.


For more information contact Nancy Lane, president, Local Media Association at nancy.lane@localmedia.org.

 

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Local Media Association has teamed up with The Blinder Group to produce two Revenue Summits this spring.

Chicago, May 15-17: click here for program and registration information.

Los Angeles, April 24-26 in conjunction with the California Newspaper Publishers Association: click here for program and registration information.

 

The LMA/Blinder Group revenue summit will take place in Chicago, May 15-17 at the Crowne Plaza Avenue Chicago hotel. A fabulous program has been assembled with every session intensely focused on revenue growth. Highlights include:

  • Telesales: The Million Dollar Baby (Todd Handy, Deseret Digital)
  • Driving Revenue & Innovation at Local Media Companies (Kirk Davis, GateHouse Media)
  • Building & Monetizing an Email Database (Matt Coen, Second Street and Scott Stines, mass2one)
  • 10 Hot Revenue Ideas from Europe (Andre Eckert, MediaHouse Austria)
  • Digital Agency Services (Chris Edwards, Cedar Rapids Gazette, Kelly Boylard, Truth Publishing Company, Zach Payer, Informed Interactive/Evening Post Publishing Company)
  • Monetizing Social: Local Media Innovation Alliance Case Study (Nancy Lane, Local Media Association)
  • Blocking & Tackling: Essential to Revenue Growth (Bill Casey, Sun-Times Media Group and Rebecca Caparelli, GateHouse Media)
  • Stepping Up: It's Time to Lead, Create & Accelerate (Mandy Schumaker, Higher Performing People Coaching & Consulting for Organizations & Entrepreneurs)
  • Revenue Roundtables: Growing Digital Revenue, Sales Structure/Compensation and Growing the Core Business
  • Revenue Case Studies from Research & Development Partners

LMA and The Blinder Group are also providing the programming for the California Newspaper Publishers Association's annual convention taking place in Los Angeles on April 24-26. A different revenue summit program has been developed. Highlights include

  • Reinvesting in the Core Product, Presented by Rob Curley, Orange County Register
  • Digital Agency Success Stories
  • Strategies for Pay Walls/Charging for Content
  • Mobile Strategies
  • Understanding SMB's Needs & Opportunities & much more

LMA members are invited to attend the California event at CNPA member rates.

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With the full-force of 100% in attendance, the LMA board met, January 16 & 17, in Las Vegas, to discuss projects and to plan for the 2013 term. Chairman of the Board John Humenik opened the two-day gathering with welcoming remarks after which board member Brandon Erlacher presented a review of the board and staff’s Myers-Briggs type indicator assessment. (Fortunately, the personality make-up of the board was overwhelming suited for its tasks.) Brandishing a unique talking-stick, which bestowed its recipient with powers of the floor, Erlacher guided the group through a SWOT analysis and an evaluation of responses from the recent members’ survey. President Nancy Lane reviewed the top projects and priorities for LMA.

The second day was centered on a dialogue, and an outline, for positioning LMA for the future. Fellow board member Matt Coen and Treasurer Gordon Borrell walked everyone through this lengthy visioning and strategy process. An invigorating exchange of ideas and opinions compelled the group to contemplate a wide range of strategy and tactic options. The board and staff completed the meeting with high expectations, along with a solid plan, for securing LMA’s unique position for its members as the most innovative, educational and inspiring of media associations.

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We've put together our agenda of 11 new webinars for the first quarter of 2013, including our new 30-minute Social Media Workshop series. Almost all are free for LMA members to attend. And, all are sure to bring new revenue ideas to the table. Don't delay, check out the list and register now!
GO TO WEBINARS >>


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Hopefully, you are ready for the holidays... but are you ready for 2013? We know how tough it can be to plan ahead but we've been tackling the tough stuff for the last few weeks at LMA: preparing for what looks to be an exciting year...


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Time to Save the Dates…

There are several major Local Media Association events scheduled for 2013 that you’ll want to add to your calendar. These events include the Key Executives Mega-Conference in February, LMA/Blinder Group Revenue Summit in May, the Annual Publishers & Advertising Directors Conference in September and both the Digital Agency and the Classified Multimedia Conference in early November.



Key Executives
Mega-Conference
February 17 - 20, 2013
The Roosevelt Hotel New Orleans

Room rate: $199


The 2013 Key Executives Mega-Conference was developed jointly by Local Media Association, Inland Press Association and Southern Newspaper Publishers Association and brings together the best thought-leaders tackling the hottest trends in the industry today for increasing revenue, audience and engagement. Program information and registration details available by clicking here.


Local Media Association / Blinder Group Revenue Summit
May 15 – 17, 2013
Crowne Plaza Avenue Chicago Downtown

Room rate: $149 plus tax

The Blinder Group and Local Media Association are working together for the fourth straight year to develop this summit focused exclusively on growing revenue. As in 2012, this Revenue Summit will bring together the best case studies from throughout North America to showcase new and innovative revenue streams. This summit is designed to include best practices from a diverse mix of local media companies regardless of platform.

Fall Publishers & Advertising Directors Conference
September 17 - 20, 2013
Sheraton St. Louis City Center

Room rate: $119 plus tax

This is one of Local Media Association's largest conferences of the year and always provides excellent revenue-producing ideas. Major advertisers take this opportunity to speak with our members in both group sessions and in one-on-one meetings regarding their advertising strategies. Concurrent sessions are offered allowing both the publisher and advertising director to choose meetings that relate specifically to their needs. Complete details will be available on the LMA website in 2013.


Digital Agency Summit & Classified Multimedia Conference
November 6 – 8, 2013
Sheraton Chicago O’Hare

Room rate: $155 plus tax

New in 2012, the Digital Agency Summit was a big success and based on feedback from program participants has been expanded and scheduled again for 2013. This conference will cover the hottest trends and success stories in this rapidly emerging space. Many of the sessions will be presented in case study format by senior executives that are charged with growing and developing digital agency services at their companies. The summit will specifically address the different structures that are being pursued in addition to lessons learned and best practices.

The Classified Multimedia Conference is a must-attend for anyone charged with growing classified revenue. As in the past, this conference will focus on using all of the tools of multimedia to grow this segment of our business.

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The Former Borrell Associates Executive to Start on December 3

After an extensive interview process that included nearly seventy applications for the position, Local Media Association has chosen Peter Conti as their new Sales & Marketing Director.

Peter Conti photo
Peter Conti

Peter Conti most recently served as an executive vice president at Borrell Associates where he has worked since 2001. His primary role there was as a consultant to media outlets and pure play Internet companies, developing and implementing business and marketing strategies for their local online and mobile initiatives. He managed and participated in Borrell Associates’ webinars and their digital sales training initiatives. He also contributed to Borrell Associates’ digital marketing industry reports and was a frequent speaker and keynoter at industry conferences. Before Borrell Associates, he was the director of interactive media for Media General's publishing division. Prior to that, in 1997, he joined Landmark Communications Inc. to develop and manage the highly successful Richmond.com Web site.

Conti received the Interactive Advertising Bureau's (IAB), “2009 Service Excellence Award," for his dedication and leadership in helping educate local marketers and ad agencies about targeted digital advertising. Conti has been an adjunct professor at Virginia Commonwealth University's School of Business teaching “Global Internet Marketing.” He attended the International Studies program at the University of Lund, Sweden, and holds a bachelor's degree in Radio, TV & Film from the University of Maryland.

“We are thrilled to welcome Pete to the LMA team,” said Nancy Lane, president of Local Media Association. “This hire reinforces our commitment to help the industry develop new revenue streams, find sustainable business models and identify trends that are most likely to succeed. Pete will enable us to help the industry in new and interesting ways. His first project will be to complete our sales certification program including the management and advanced tracks.”

“I am proud to join the team at Local Media Association,” said Conti, “I have long viewed LMA as one of the most innovative and progressive organizations to serve our industry. I am excited by the many opportunities that lie ahead and look forward to talking to LMA members about their needs and how I can help them grow their business.”

Conti will start on December 3. LMA members can reach him at peter.conti@localmedia.org.

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Feb. 17-20 at The Roosevelt New Orleans, New Orleans, La.

Program topics have been announced and registration has begun for the 2013 Mega-Conference, sponsored by Local Media Association, the Inland Press Association, and the Southern Newspaper Publishers Association.

The 2013 Mega-Conference brings together the best thought leaders tackling the hottest trends in the industry today for increasing revenue, audience and engagement. This jam-packed program takes on the challenges of transforming from print to digital, exploring new print formats and how specifically to start a digital services agency, and much, much more. Click here for a complete list of session descriptions.

The 2012 Mega-Conference attracted nearly 500 decision makers from about 100 of the largest media companies in the United States and Canada. This makes this conference a valuable opportunity for companies that do business with newspapers to meet with their current customers and discuss their products and services with prospective new clients. Exhibit space and sponsorships are available.

  • Pre-conference bonus sessions will be held on Sunday, Feb. 17, from 2-5 p.m.
  • The conference officially opens Monday, Feb. 18, at 1 p.m. and runs through Noon on Wednesday, Feb 20.

Plan to attend one of the fastest growing industry events in North America by registering today.

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FREE REPORT NOW AVAILABLE TO LOCAL MEDIA ASSOCIATION MEMBERS

Local Media Association loves to provide added-value to our members on a regular basis. So in addition to the 24+ free webinars that we will conduct this year as well as the free virtual two-day advertising conference that we added in the summer, we are pleased to issue various research reports and white papers from time to time.

This latest report takes a look inside Groupon. Despite the negative headlines, this disruptive innovator is showing serious growth in North America and is building a business model that will transition past "deal of the day."

Groupon Report

LMA president Nancy Lane and LMA board member Brandon Erlacher spent an afternoon at Groupon headquarters this month along with WAN-IFRA study tour participants from India, Slovakia, Germany, Ireland and Brazil. This report showcases the top takeaways from the visit.

To order your free copy, memebers simply need to like us on Facebook then send an e-mail to hq@localmedia.org with the e-mail address for us to send the report to.

Non-Local Media Association members can purchase the report for $99 by clicking here.

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Keynote: Sold! On Classifieds.

By Al Cupo, vice president, Local Media Association

Presented by Kelly Wirges, ProMax Training & Consulting, Inc

Kelly Wirges of ProMax Training and Consulting brought the energy to the second day of the Classified Multimedia Conference program. Kelly’s 90-minute keynote presentation provided a step-by-step approach to providing excellent service while selling the right product mix for each customer’s specific needs.


  1.)          Create an incredible Customer Experience

Every call should deliver a 5 star experience. Be warm; be welcoming.


You are the company; you have more contact with customers than just about anyone else in the company.


‘Always remember: Customers are not an interruption of your work, they are your work. Slow down!’


   2.)          Deliberately Include Persuasive Communication...

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By Nancy Lane, president, Local Media Association

Gordon Borrell delivered the keynote presentation to a packed room of 70 attendees this morning. These attendees represented newspapers, broadcast and directories from six different countries.

 Key takeaways included:

  •  Online Ad Production: Online agency/exchange fees ($25 billion), display ad design, app design, online contest/game development, online video production

 

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Keynote Presentation: Real Estate – Multimedia Packages That Work

By Al Cupo, vice president, Local Media Association

Presented by: Barbara Kleban, Managing Broker, Coldwell Banker

Barbara Kleban informed and entertained conference participants with her fast moving and insightful presentation. Barbara covered everything from local agents compensation programs to actionable suggestions that local publications can implement immediately to gain more R.E. business.

First and foremost, Barbara said that all R.E. agents must be ‘Googleable’, meaning they must show-up on search pages as much as possible. She went on to suggest that local newspapers assist agents by developing a real estate agent directory to assist with their SEO program...

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By Al Cupo, vice president, Local Media Association

Keynote Presentation: Leading Through Change

Presented by: Bill Cummings, former Senior Director of Advertising, Freedom Communications

Bill Cummings began day one of the conference with a fast paced look at how newspapers can embrace the kind of change that will immediately impact their bottom line. As his first slide said: If you change nothing, nothing will change.
Bill covered a great deal of information during his one-hour presentation. The following list represents a snap-shot of the many suggestions he shared with the conference participants:

Creating a Culture of Change
  • Become a purpose driven sales organization
  • Equip all sales people to be able to see value and communicate the purpose to their advertiser for choosing to engage your services.
  • Understand the purpose of a specific advertising product or feature and seek out new advertisers that could benefit from similar results.

“Romance the Customer”...

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Contests Case Study: GateHouse Media – Rebecca Capparelli, Director of Sales Training Development

By Nancy Lane, President, Local Media Association

Contests Case Study: GateHouse Media – Rebecca Capparelli, Director of Sales Training Development

Contests produce well into the seven figures for GateHouse Media and this category continues to grow. They realized early on that even very small properties could bring in $25 K with a football contest.

Contest strategy: to create chain-wide contests that can be run at every property with ease and simple implementation.

Planning is essential when it comes to contests. When they launch without enough lead-time, it doesn’t produce the best results.

Sales rollout philosophy...

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Strategic Shift in Deals

By Al Cupo, Vice President, Local Media Association

Presented by Aaron Toyton, Director of Digital Business Development, Journal Interactive

Strategic Shift in Deals

Focus on customer service

Grow the email db

Close deals – fill calendar two weeks in advance

Diversify deals mix to attract new customers

Add a dedicated sales staff

Grow presence in market through mobile and social

Personnel Adjustments

2 full-time deals sellers: base plus a percentage of every deal sold.

Bonus if exceeding goals.

Special incentives for other sales people

Promoting phone orders – call center

Dedicated customer service person – some customers know her by name

Marketing & Promotion...

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Sales Focus & Deal Quality

By Al Cupo, Vice President, Local Media Association

Presented by Christine Rice, Vice President Interactive Sales, Barrington Broadcasting Group LLC

Deals Profile
12 websites running deals
27 broadcast stations
14 markets across the Midwest and South
Deals are a perfect fit for these markets with SMB clients
Started Deals in February 2011

Weekly emails to all station presidents, top execs and AE’s with weekly deal specials sold throughout their company

Group Focus: Regular calls with all sites
Local Sites: weekly, monthly and quarterly calls to discuss deals’ reports
Management Team: all revenue reports sent to management and used in follow-up revenue calls with presidents

Weekly Reports - The Data:
  1. Revenue Reports
  2. Deal Category Reports
  3. Deals/Contest Database Reports

All report data used to identify and measure best in class programs

Onsite Visits
Personal visits are essential to maintain local focus
These onsite visits are used to gauge success with all interactive products; Deals category is part of every regular site visit!

Training and role-playing is very important to keeping deals top of mind on each sales call.

Deals training includes...

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The Deals Store Model

By Nancy Lane, president, Local Media Association

Liz White, Vice President, New Media, The Record Journal, Meriden, CT (Circulation about 18K), presented a case study about their success using the Deals Store model to increase their deals revenue.

Strategy & Success Behind Deal Stores

       Good for advertisers – no out of pocket cost and no risk as usual; receive a lot of additional print & digital promotion

       Good for customers – lots of local deals & big discounts to choose from; creates a shopping mall & browsing experience

       Good for reps – easier to see around a theme; it’s another tool in their kit; their customers are happy with the additional promotion; extra bonus $ for highest revenue deal in each store (in additional to regular monthly bonuses)

       Good for newspaper – new revenue, new advertisers, positive buzz...

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FUNDAMENTALS OF DEALS SUCCESS

By Nancy Lane, president, Local Media Association

Chris Edwards, Vice President Sales/Customer Care for Source Media Group/Fusionfarm, shared strategy and success stories in the deals space.
 
Source Media includes
The Gazette – 55 K daily/60 K Sunday, KCRG TV 9 and their digital agency Fusionfarm.
 
Monetizing your database:
 
Build & market it intelligently!
 
Email is thriving: 88% check email daily; 50% of consumers make purchases as a direct result of email. Email drives more conversions that any other channel.

Tactics for building your database:

  • Give people a reason to opt in – make them an offer, initial, second try, third try…
  • Make it easy
  • Keep them engaged – offers they want; reasons to be interested
  • Be creative & interesting (don’t look like everyone else out there)

How they grew from 0 to over 33,000:

  • Great deals
  • Utilizing site features
  • Leveraging in-house assets & promotions
  • Contests...

Full Article | Comments (17)

 

By Nancy Lane, president, Local Media Association

 

Matt Coen, president of Second Street and sponsor of the LMA Deals & Promotions Summit, got things started this morning with opening comments:

 

Why online promotions?

Revenue from online promotions will surpass online advertising starting in 2014 and will double starting in 2016. Online advertising accounts for $40.3 billion dollars this year and will remain fairly flat in the coming years. Online promotions has grown from $16 billion in 2008 to over $35 billion in 2012 and will exceed $50 billion by 2014/2015. (Source: Borrell Associates). 

Merchant success with deals is growing. The majority (62%) made money on deals in the last few months; another 19% broke even; 19% lost money.


Why performance-based advertising? 65% of internet advertising is performance-based (think Google, FB & deals); 31% is impression-based. This model is here to stay.


Be sure to check back often for updates throughout the day. Starting this afternoon, Al Cupo will also be posting live updates from the Classified Mulitmedia Conference. 

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The affects of Hurricane Sandy continue to reach far and wide along the eastern seaboard. Many Local Media Association members from North Carolina to Massachusetts are still experiencing total or sporadic power outages; others are still coping with the massive amount of coastal flooding and wind damage left in the wake of this monster storm. Local Media Association’s monthly newsletter, Local Media Today, printed by associate member AFL Web Printing in Secaucus, New Jersey has likewise felt the effects of Sandy. Thanks to the terrific efforts of AFL, Local Media Today, originally slated to go on press last week, will be printed tomorrow. We encourage you to visit the Local Media Association web site to access the current electronic edition of Local Media Today:

The November edition of Local Media Today features the following association highlights:

  • Reinvigorate Your Bottom Line for 2013: The Local Media Innovation Alliance Advantage
  • Q & A with new Local Media Association Board of Directors Chairman Gareth Charter
  • Industry Updates from the Local Media Foundation

Other articles include:

  • Transforming a media company, through disruption, innovation, and commitment to mission
  • The latest industry news and R & D member information
  • New Borrell Associates research highlighted: SMBs Spend 2.5x More on Digital ‘Services’

Look for your print copy of Local Media Today to be delivered next week but be sure to also check-out the electronic version here.

Full Article | Comments (21)

 

We know you have many choices when it comes to charitable giving but please earmark a few dollars to support the industry that employs you. The Local Media Foundation exists to assist local media companies with the digital transformation. Donated funds are used to provide research, best practices and case studies to the industry. The continuation of this good work relies on private donations from people like you.

Peter Bakke
Peter Bakke
Wick Communications

Peter Bakke, Director of Digital Media at Wick Communications had this to say when asked why he donates to the Local Media Foundation:
“We are all trying to figure out the complex transformation of our business. The Local Media Foundation is our partner in this journey. There are many exciting, informative and cutting-edge projects the Foundation works on to help us succeed. I look at my donation to the Foundation as an investment in our industry's future.“



Matt Walsh
Matt Walsh
The Observer Group, Inc.

And Matt Walsh, CEO/Editor/Publisher, The Observer Group, Inc. noted, “We have found that the Local Media Foundation and what it provides our little company is tantamount to having a first-rate R&D department that we could never afford otherwise. If you want to stay in business, ahead of your competitors and abreast of trends, I believe you will find this is a small investment with a worthwhile ROI.”


The Local Media Foundation has a reputation for being innovative and leading edge. Programs such as the recent Innovation Mission are indicative of the organization's commitment to assist the community media industry during this time of unprecedented change. Along with Local Media Association, both organizations strive to provide a leadership role in the industry by suggesting solutions to problems instead of just reporting on them or covering them at conferences.


The Local Media Foundation is a 501(c)(3) charitable trust that is funded by private donations. All contributions will be recognized in Local Media Today's December edition (funds received after November 15 will be recognized in a later edition). Donations are tax deductible. Support the Local Media Foundation today by making a donation at one of the following Lifetime Giving Levels. Contributions of any amount are welcome and appreciated.


Register Now Icon
  • Platinum Level: $10,000 and over (Customized plans are available including choice of initiatives and/or the donors name attached to a project.)
  • Gold Level: $7,500 - $9,999
  • Silver Level: $5,000 - $7,499
  • Bronze Level: $2,500 - $4,999
  • Transformation Level: $1,000 - $2,499
  • Innovation Level: $500 - $999
  • Digital Level: $250 - $499
  • Community Level: $100 - $249
  • Friend of the Local Media Foundation: $35 - $99

We know that charitable contributions are a personal choice. Please earmark some dollars to support the industry that employs you or contributes to your livelihood.


Thanks from all of us at the Local Media Foundation. We promise to put your money to good use!


Questions? Please Contact Us

HQ@localmedia.org or 888-486-2466


Thank you for your support!

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Featured Speakers

Ben Shaw
Rebecca Caparelli
Gatehouse Media

Ben Shaw
Ben Shaw
Shaw Suburban Media

Register Now Icon

Be there on November 7 in Chicago to learn more about:

• How GateHouse Media has generated $2.6 million in contest revenue already this year
• Shaw Media's deal that exceeded $175,000 this month
• Why Source Media/Cedar Rapids Gazette is one of North America's top deal producers
• How WGN/Chicago uses contests to drive big revenue gains
• What Second Street's top deal & promotions clients have in common
• Where this space is going over the next five years
• And much, much more!

To register, click here. The host hotel is the affordable Sheraton O'Hare Airport in Chicago. ROI is guaranteed or your money back.

Full Article | Comments (66)

New York - Oct. 30-31, 2012

Street Fight Summit 2012

With hyperlocal advertising on track for $100 billion in revenue by the end of the decade, it’s fair to say that location and geotargeting have truly entered a stage of warp speed. With so much revenue on the line, gaining insights into best practices and sharing lessons and experiences has never been more important and timely for winning over local merchants and national retailers.

Join us for a two-day event on Oct. 30-31 in New York City for the second annual gathering of bleeding-edge practitioners in hyperlocal -- on stage, in the exhibitor booths, and in the audience. Networking will begin in advance online and continue throughout the event and during the day-one happy hour.

LMA members get 20% off with LMA20 coupon code!
Register now.

Speaker lineup includes:

  • Steven Rosenblatt, Chief Revenue Officer at Foursquare: "Making Location Move the Needle for a Mobile App"
  • Gail Goodman, CEO, Constant Contact: "What do SMBs Want From a Local Commerce Solution?"
  • Howard Lerman, CEO at Yext: "The Future of Local Information Infrastructure"
  • Zohar Yardeni, CEO at Daily Voice: "Hyperlocal Publishing Models that Work"
  • Mark Josephson, SVP of Revenue at Patch: "An Assessment of Patch at 3.5 Years"

 

Prices go up $200 on Oct. 9. Register now for maximum savings!

Who attends Street Fight Summit 2012?

Attendance includes key individuals in the hyperlocal ecosystem: publishers, location-based tech developers, directories, local search, advertisers, investors and more.

 

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Special Ends October 9

Register Now and SAVE an Additional 25% Off the Regular Cost

This annual Classified Multimedia Conference scheduled for November 7-9, 2012, at the Sheraton Chicago O’Hare Airport Hotel, Chicago, IL, is a must-attend for anyone charged with growing classified revenue. As in the past, the conference will focus on using all of the multimedia tools available to grow this segment of our business.

Classified MultiMedia Conference

Sessions/speakers include:

  • Keynote Session: SOLD! On Classifieds.
    Presented by Kelly Wirges, ProMax Training & Consulting, Inc.
  • Research Report - Uncovering the Mystery of Recruitment Advertising Spending.
    Presented by Gordon Borrell, CEO, Borrell Associates
  • Social Marketing / Social Commerce 2.0.
    Presented by Shannon Kinney, Founder/GM, Dream Local Digital
  • Expanding Mobile Technology More Than Just Garage Sales & Open Houses
  • Real Estate Multimedia Packages that Work
  • Open Discussion: Value Proposition - Online and Print Products
  • Interactive Employment Opportunities Hyper Local Strategic Partnerships.
    Presented by Joe Shaker Jr., Shaker Recruitment Advertising & Communications
  • Automotive - Strategic Partnerships
  • And more!

Click here to review the current agenda.

Special Discounted Rates Available for a Limited Time Only
Register Today and SAVE an Additional 25% Off the Regular Cost:

Registration Fees:
  • Classified Avenue Participants: Regular Price: $259 / attendee - NOW $195 / attendee*
  • Local Media Association Members: Regular Price: $395 / attendee - NOW $295 / attendee
  • Media Association Partner Members: Regular Price: $495 / attendee - NOW $370 / attendee
  • Non-Member/Non-Media Partners: Regular Price: $595 / attendee - NOW $445 / attendee

*The Classified Avenue Participant rate is available ONLY to Local Media Association members participating in Classified Avenue. Classified Avenue participants must be adhering to the terms of Classified Avenue Quarterly Tear Sheet Collection Program in order to be eligible for this deep discount. Non-Classified Avenue participants will be charged the full registration fee shown.

To register online, click here.

Sponsorship and Exhibit Opportunities are Available. For more information contact Al Cupo, Vice President-Operation, (215) 256-6801, al.cupo@localmedia.org or Deanna Lewis, Sales and Marketing Director, (207) 384-5022, deanna.lewis@localmedia.org.

    Full Article | Comments (46)

    General Session: Sales Structure/The Age Old Debate

    by Deb Shaw

    Borrell Associates CEO Gordon Borrell concluded Wednesday sessions with his well attended presentation on how to structure print and digital sales staff for maximum performance. His presentation was thorough, on point, and backed up with impeccable & indisputable statistics. It also was the topic of many a conversation at last night’s reception at the Georgia Aquarium (sponsored by AdMall) and was deemed by all to be an outstanding end to an excellent day of programming.

    Gordon Borrell photo

    Borrell got the program started with two questions:

    Is the Internet a sustaining technology to your newspaper, or a disruptive technology?

    Do you want a significant share of Internet advertising dollars being spent in your market?

    He came back around to question one at the end of his presentation but asked the audience to raise a hand if they answered yes to the ad dollar question and needless to say, everyone put hands up. He then proceeded to objectively make the case for a separate digital sales rep (or more) as he walked the group through a series of statistical slides that easily underscored the effectiveness of this approach. The full presentation and stats are viewable at www.borrellassociates.com/LMA2012

     

    Some other highlights:

    • Know your target. How much are local businesses spending on digital advertising in your market?
    • Spending data for over 500 markets is accessible through Borrell at www.borrell associates.com/dmr
    • Know your potential, not your share. Borrell research has proven that newspapers can expect a 24.6% share of the digital spend in your market.
    • Newspaper sites that have a digital-only sales staff enjoy 2.5x digital ad revenue per rep.
    • Once you determine your potential revenue, divide that number by $250K and that’s the number of dedicated digital A/E reps you should have.

     

    Access the full presentation at www.borrellassociates.com/LMA2012

    Full Article | Comments (16)

    Wednesday, September 12, 2012

    Breakout Session: E-mail Marketing

    by Deb Shaw

    Three media professionals shared the panel to talk about e-mail marketing this afternoon. Each gave insights into their unique approaches but one thing was common – email marketing is generating revenue and it’s profitable.

    Email Marketing Session photo
    From left, Samantha, Allison, Rich

    From Allison Cusick, Digital Marketing Manager, The Elkhart Truth (IN)

    • They’ve been collecting email addresses for years. They’ve been collected from multiple sources but essentially any and all touch points with customers and market residents are used.
    • With a total of roughly 77,000 addresses, they boiled that down to just over 41,000 useable addresses when they got ready to go full steam into their email marketing program.
    • Since January, they’ve conducted 19 contests and surveys to grow their database.
    • They’re selling marketing campaigns to local businesses at the rate of $12/M plus an extra $5/CPM for added levels like gender, income, job industry, interest/lifestyles.

    From Samantha Johnston, Executive Director, Colorado Press Association

    • Sync2Media is a separate division of the association. Developed to become more relevant to advertisers seeking to buy audience.
    • Regardless of how technically savvy your market is, people understand what email is and why it’s important.
    • Traditional newspaper and website advertising channels are strong; email is an affordable and viable audience extension tool.
    • Consumers prefer receiving email marketing messages over message sent via texting and Facebook.
    • Email marketing is very scalable, can be executed successfully in large and small markets.
    • Open rates range from 10-17%; click thru rates range from 1.5-2.5%.

    From Rich Whippen, President/CEO, Washington Suburban Press Network

    • His newspaper network is huge with print circulation totaling over 1,000,000.
    • They got into email marketing to generate revenue and it’s working. Last month alone, they generated $150K in profit from the program. Media Prowler is their email marketing division.
    • Key ingredients to his success is transparency and purity of the data.
    • There are a lot of email marketers – many are peddling inferior data. Make sure yours is clean and crisp.
    • They will sell e-mail lists to clients, ranging in price from $25/M to $55/M depending on size and scope of sale.
    • Go to www.mediaprowler.com to get a live experience of selecting email data.
    • Rich is willing to explore partnerships with other publishers, to wholesale their collected data to others in the industry.

    Contacts:
    Allison Cuslock, acusick@etruth.com
    Samantha Johnston, sjohnston@colopress.net
    RichWhippen, rwhippen@wspnet.com

    Full Article | Comments (301)

    Wednesday, September 12, 2012

    The 2017 Project: Looking Down the Road

    by Deb Shaw

    Centro Founder & President Shawn Riegsecker is a smart guy and he’s got the capital to prove it. In 2010 he took on the full time job (on top of his full time job) of raising venture capital and ultimately succeeded in raising $22.5 million that settled in December 2010. Good for him and Centro….bad for their 2011 strategy development because the capital raising process was so all consuming. So, as he started 2011, he took himself off to the desert for nine days to think, analyze, and envision what the future looks like so he could plan and direct the best use of his resources.

    Shawn Riegsecker photo
    Centro Founder & President Shawn Riegsecker shared his media vision for 2017 and beyond.

    His prognostications took center stage this morning at the LMA Fall Conference as he took the audience of several hundred media professionals on a journey to 2017. Admitting that he’s going out on a limb with his predictions, he also pointed out that he was willing to do so because he believes very much that this is what the future looks like. Some of what he sees ahead:

    • Disruption will be 10x the magnitude of what we’ve seen in the last 10 years.
    • For newspapers, print large metros don’t exist; national print dailies are still breathing; smaller community dailies and weeklies are doing well. Capitalizing on the local connection is paramount.
    • The tablet revolution continues and wreaks havoc on all traditional ways of consuming data.
    • There will be a ‘to the death’ match between telco/wireless/cable providers. OPPORTUNITY HERE – these providers will need to advertise!
    • Twitter is HUGE. Previously Riegsecker thought Facebook might own Twitter in the future; now he wonders if that might be reversed.
    • Mobile phones become more powerful than laptops; the ‘screen’ is important.
    • Video is ubiquitous thanks to technology advances in HD compression.
    • The preprint problem – he says this business will fall off the cliff in 2014.
    • Digital editions survive, and many thrive possibly if they get on the tablet bandwagon now.
    • There’s a collapse of segregated and silo media – no more offline or online media. It will all be just media and the choices will be Text, Image, Audio, Video, Social.
    • On the buying side, audience and media fragmentation is enormous making the media buying process even more complex.
    • Publishers of quality content are the proxies to audience. Local is key. Local media companies, exactly like LMA members, are sitting in the cat bird seat. “As an industry, you guys are in the premium bucket.”

    Riegsecker captivated the standing room only audience with these and many other predictions. Time will tell….

    Visit www.centro.net for more on Shawn and his company.

    Full Article | Comments (263)

    Bonus Day of Programming a Boon for Attendees

    by Deb Shaw

    In a new approach this year, LMA conference planners added three sessions to the agenda on Tuesday. In years past, this day was devoted entirely to one-on-one meetings with media buyers and the Board of Directors meetings but with so many members on hand prior to the Wednesday AM keynote presentation, planners developed three excellent bonus sessions.

    Joe DeBiak photo
    JoeDeBiak, CEO, Center for Advertising Effectiveness

    In Session One, Joe DeBiak from the Center for Advertising Effectiveness showed attendees why advertiser ROI is key to increasing digital ad revenue. Using data capture strategies with both digital and print ads, Joe pointed out a potential new revenue stream for publishing companies that helps advertisers grow and increase their ad buy. These strategies also allow newspapers to 'control' the account and separate themselves from competitors. Joe pointed out the do's and don'ts of digital display ads to help maximize their effectiveness... and keep advertisers coming back for more. Learn more about this at www.centerforadvertisingeffectiveness.com.

    Bonus Session Two brought Matt Villacarte from Google to address a brand new initiative out of his Consumer Survey division. This partnership opportunity is aimed directly at publishers who offer unique, premium content, aka local media companies. Read more about this session in a separate story on this website.

    Impact Engine photo
    Impact Engine CEO Neil Greer, right, and VP/Product Development Bryan Depew conducting the Online Display Revenue Boot Camp. Special thanks to Impact Engine for the Platinum Sponsorship of the LMA Fall Conference.

    The concluding Bonus Session was presented by Impact Engine’s Neil Greer, CEO, and Bryan Depew, VP/Product Development. Together they tackled the topic of ‘The Future of Desktop, Tablet & Mobile Ad Revenue” in the Online Display Revenue Boot Camp. Here are some key points they imparted:

    • In 2012, revenue from online display advertising delivered to the desktop still makes up the majority of revenue.
    • By 2016, the number of mobile impressions will overtake desktop impressions as a total percentage.
    • Sites that utilize a dedicated rep to online earn 300 percent more in online revenue.
    • The majority of real online revenue in online display comes from direct sold, premium ad positions such as Home Page Takeover and Section Sponsorship. These sales are made using Rich Media units such as Pencil Push Down and Interstitial ads; both with and without video.
    • Address the direct sold opportunity first and before considering remnant networks.
    • When addressing mobile, start with Multi-Screen compatibility with a focus on tablet users.
    • Leading organizations such as Morris Communications and San Diego Union Tribune are showing their online display specs using iPad.
    • When it comes to selecting an ad server for desktop and mobile advertising focus on the core features and less on behavioral targeting.

    Reach Neil and Bryan at www.impactengine.com

    Full Article | Comments (32)

    Publisher Opportunity: Monetizing the Micro-survey

    by Deb Shaw

    Matt Villacarte, Google
    Matt Villacarte, Google

    Google’s Matt Villacarte, Publisher Development Manager for Google Consumer Surveys, attracted a large crowd interested to learn more about this new partnership opportunity. Launched a scant 6 months ago, Google is looking to connect publishers and market research companies with this survey tool on publisher websites.

    Some highlights of the Google Consumer Survey Program:

    • Short one or two question surveys appear on newspaper websites, at a break in premium content (an inline prompt) or anchored on top of a page such as an image gallery.
    • Readers can choose to proceed to rest of story or to view the gallery by answering a short survey, one or two questions, or taking an alternate publisher-chosen course of action.
    • Every time a user completes the survey, the publisher earns revenue at the rate of .05 cents per completed survey.
    • Google is seeking producers of unique content to partner with on this program and according to Matt “local news is exclusive” so there’s a real advantage for LMA members to get to the top of the list for partnership exploration.
    • Only age, gender and geography of user is tracked.
    • Some LMA members are already participating including Shaw Suburban Media. A live example was demonstrated at Shaw’s Newton Daily News. www.newtondailynews.com. Click through top story to see an example of a survey.
    • Explore this opportunity at the Consumer Survey home page at https://google.com/insights/consumersurveys/home

    Full Article | Comments (14)

    New Category of Membership for Research & Development Partners Tops the List of Changes

    A series of bylaws changes were recommended by the Local Media Association's board of directors recently and the membership voted unanimously to approve all of the changes.

    Most of the changes that were recommended involved replacing outdated language and also changing language to reflect the new name (On January 1, 2012 the organization changed its name from Suburban Newspapers of America to Local Media Association). Other changes included the right for the immediate past chairman to be a voting member of the board (previously an ex-officio, non-voting member) and a quorum of 30% for future bylaws changes (the previous version did not establish a quorum).

    The biggest and most exciting change was the creation of a new class of membership called R&D partners (Research & Development Partners). This class provides a higher level option for those that provide goods and services to the industry. The new class comes with voting rights and the ability to serve on the board of directors. The changes also allow two associate or R&D members to serve on the board at any given time as opposed to just one in the prior version.

    "Our associate members have always been an important part of our membership" said Nancy Lane, president, Local Media Association. "Some of them want to play a bigger role with our association and we welcome that. This new level of membership will allow them to do that and will provide increased benefits to them. We especially like the term 'R&D partner' as this more accurately reflects their important role in the local media industry."

    Gordon Borrell photo
    Gordon Borrell

    Matt Coen

    Currently Gordon Borrell, CEO, Borrell Associates serves on the Local Media Association board and is in fact moving into the chairs and will eventually become chairman of the board in 2015. This fall Matt Coen, CEO, Second Street Media will join the board as the second associate/R&D member. "Gordon's contributions have been significant" said Lane, "He brings a different and welcomed perspective to our meetings and helps us in ways that are different from our newspaper board members. We think that Matt will also strengthen our board and help us in our efforts to innovate, educate and inspire the industry during this time of great transition."

    Note that the bylaws changes did not include any revisions to membership requirements for newspaper members. The Local Media Association board of directors continues to meet with members and host two-way discussions to better understand their position. The board does expect to recommend further changes to at least address the treatment of online-only members and to possibly expand beyond that. The board welcomes the input of all members. Send comments to board chairman Jon Rust at jrust@semissourian.com.

    For more information about the R&D class of membership, contact Al Cupo at (215) 256-6801 or al.cupo@localmedia.org, or Deanna Lewis at (207) 384-5022 or deanna.lewis@localmedia.org.

    Full Article | Comments (121)

    Local Media Association’s highest individual honor salutes leadership, innovation and achievement.
    Betty Carr photo
    Betty Carr

    From a humble start as a part timer in the classified department of Oshawa This Week, Betty Carr forged an outstandingly successful decades-long career in the community newspaper industry. Now, capping off her professional career from which she just recently retired, Carr has been selected to receive the Local Media Association 2012 Dean S. Lesher Award. In recognition of her outstanding contributions to her company, community and the local newspaper industry at large, Carr has been resoundingly chosen for this lifetime achievement award, LMA’s highest honor. It is bestowed annually on an individual who has enhanced the industry through leadership, innovation and achievement of excellence in both their company and community.

    In honoring Carr, who retired from her position as vice president of Metroland Media Group’s Toronto division and publisher of Toronto Community News in the spring, LMA is saluting one of the industry’s finest. She has made a vast imprint on the local community newspaper industry, within her company and in her community. According to Peter Haggert, Editor in Chief of Toronto Community News, “(Betty is) someone who fought an uphill battle, took a one-paper publisher's job nobody wanted, and turned it into an incredibly successful franchise of community newspapers in Canada's largest city.”

    Full Article | Comments (1199)

    Opportunity with Consumer Surveys to be Shared
    By Nancy Lane, President, Local Media Association

    One of the top takeaways from the recent West Coast Innovation Mission was the opportunity to implement Google's consumer surveys program. In fact, nearly every attendee has already signed a contract and started the program on many of their web sites. We are hearing great results about the revenue that is being generated from this program (Digital First Media expects to realize $4-$6 million in the first year company-wide).

    Matt Villacarte, publisher relations director for Google's Consumer Surveys will showcase the program details on day one of the upcoming Local Media Fall Conference. His session will take place on Tuesday, September 11 in the afternoon.

    Unlike other programs, this one is suitable for companies of all sizes and many of Local Media Association's smaller members are benefitting from this very cool opportunity. Be sure to attend this session to learn more. For those that already participate, note that Matt will share some best practice examples that may be helpful to you.

    To register for the fall conference click here.

    Full Article | Comments (28)

    Event Marketing Now Represents a Huge Revenue Stream for the Times Free-Press

    Jason Taylor photo
    Jason Taylor

    Event marketing is not new and many Local Media Association members do a fine job with this area of the business. What is new is the approach that Jason Taylor, President & Publisher of the Times Free-Press in Chattanooga, TN has taken. This approach has resulted in a major new revenue stream for his company and has elevated the Times Free-Press' brand in the marketplace. 

    Taylor takes events to the next level and produces a wide variety of them from very small (think movie theatre previews and spelling bees) to very large (events centered on women, seniors, kids, prep sports and more). The event calendar continues to grow (they now produce over 18 events per year) as does the revenue. His company is enjoying a good year and he attributes much of their growth to events. 

    In this high energy, inspirational session, Taylor will kick off the entire fall conference on the morning of September 12. For those that haven't seen him before, be prepared to witness one of the best presentations that you will ever see. He consistently ranks number one in evaluation forms when he is on a program and attendees ask to have him back over and over again. This session will likely provide enough ROI for the entire conference. 

    Whether you are currently producing a lot of events or not, this session will deliver many ideas to grow this area of your business. It is definitely a not to be missed session!

    DOWNLOADS/LINKS
    Additional Conference Details  |  Program/Agenda

    REGISTRATION
    REGISTER ONLINE  |  Registration Form

    Registration fees for Local Media Association members are $595 for the first attendee, $495 for the second attendee if paid by August 21, 2012.

    HOTEL INFORMATION
    Sheraton Atlanta Hotel
    165 Courtland Street NE, Atlanta, GA

    Reservation number: (800) 833-8624

    Online Reservations: Click here
    Hotel Website: Click here

    The room rate is $159 (single/double occupancy) per night plus tax. When making your reservations, please reference the Local Media Association Fall Publishers' and Advertising Directors' Conference. Rooms will be offered at the quoted rate based on availability three (3) days before and (3) days after the conference. All conference attendees are encouraged to reserve their hotel rooms as early as possible.

    Full Article | Comments (229)

    This six-day tour is scheduled for November 4 through November 9, 2012 and includes stops in Washington DC, New York City and Chicago, IL.

    Local Media Association Members can register for this study tour at WAN-IFRA member rates.
    Join media professionals from around the world as they visit some of the top digital innovators in the US and learn what platforms and technologies they are using and how they make money with digital.

    Highlights include stops at The New York Times, Associated Press and The Daily in New York. You’ll experience Election Day first-hand in Washington D.C and be the guest of the sales team at the Washington Times. In addition, you’ll meet with Gordon Borrell, CEO, Borrell Associates and visit The Chicago Tribune and Cars.com in Chicago.

    Topics discussed along the way include:

    • Successful digital campaigns
    • Cross-media campaigns/packages
    • Platforms and products: what is offered and in what packages
    • Prices for digital advertising products
    • Process/workflow: cooperation with media agencies or direct sale?
    • How is the sales team organized: how companies make sure that they have the digital expertise

    Complete program details are available on the WAN-IFRA web site at:
    http://www.wan-ifra.org/events/study-tour-digital-advertising-strategies

    Full Article | Comments (57)

     

    The Economy & Mental Health – Top Action Items


    By: Nancy Lane, president, Local Media Association

    During the final session, attendees split into four groups to discuss the top takeaways and action plans. The groups addressed immediate plans, story ideas, longer-term plans and ways to stay in touch, share and network. The following outlines their top takeaways: 10 stories we can do now:
    • Why can’t we link suicide rate to the economy?
    • How does health care reform affect our communities immediately?
    • First person blog, post or story about what we learned at SRI
    • Talk to employers about why they can’t continue same health care coverage given the health care reform law passage
    • With elections upcoming, ask candidates their views on mental health issues, funding, etc.
    • How are mental health professionals impacted by lower funding, clinics closing, etc.
    • We have a burgeoning mental health crisis. Who’s there to take care of us?
    • Talk to people who have received treatment
    • Q&A with mental health practitioners
    • Interview HR people on how they handle lay-offs, pay cuts – is there a safety net or do you just hand the employee a box and tell them to clear out their desk?

    Full Article | Comments (17)


    Alex Richards, Staff Writer, Chicago Tribune, Chicago, IL

    By: Nancy Lane, president, Local Media Association

    Numbers and Databases – How to Find Them, Use Them, Read Them & Interpret Them. Alex Richards, Staff Writer, Chicago Tribune

    2 great tools from Google that he recommends:
    • Google "Refine" - great tool for dealing with dirty data (standardizing names/places). Works in web browser.
    • Google's "Fusion Tables" lowers the barrier to entry for data exploration/analysis. Map data/visualize in charts.

    Economic data sources that can provide great information for local markets:
    • Bureau of Labor Statistics
    • Bureau of Economic Analysis
    • PUMS- public use microdata sample

    What to ask for:
    Data that gets at the strain on families, the fiscal strife that is a source of emotional disruption – the effects of a weak economy.
    • Foreclosures, various liens, notices of default (local property assessor and/or recorder)
    • Bankruptcy filings (court system)
    • Migration patterns (IRS, census)
    • Unexcused absences, removals from school (local districts, state education agencies)
    • Utilization of public safety nets like SNAP, TANF, job retraining, shelters and food banks
    • Prevalence of suicide, where more recent information can come directly from your coroner or medical examiner

    Other signs of a stuttering economy:
    • State/local sales tax revenues
    • New weekly unemployment claims (DOL, state)
    • Mass layoff trends in your state (DOL)
    • New business licenses, home starts

    Full Article | Comments (52)


    Tom Koetting, Deputy Managing Editor, Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, Milwaukee, WI

    By Nancy Lane, president, Local Media Association

    Managing Yourself & Your Newsroom - Thomas Koetting, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

    "Start with a question you can't answer. Then start digging and see where it takes you. It can be small - actually small is often better. Don't write about nouns - prisons, hospitals, empty homes. And remember, as you mine data, use volume to tell broad stories, individual cases to give color and personal touch." 

    Ideas:

    • Read the paper. Read web sites. Read bloggers. Read. Yes really.
    • Step back and ask the big questions, then narrow them.
    • Trust your life experiences.
    • Solicit from readers online. 

    Launch Meetings:

    • Everyone from other departments involved
    • Show pre-reporting, sources
    • What is the nut graph? The point of view? The question that you are answering?
    • What is the worst case scenario of reporting? Is that good enough?
    • What CAR work is needed?
    • What multimedia ideas are possible?
    • What time is needed?
    • Presentation pitfalls - get out in front of them.

    "Give yourself and others permission to have lousy ideas. Think counter-intuitively. Question the most obvious things. But most of all, come to some sense of agreement so that you can refer back to this meeting in the days ahead when people get lost or go astray. Think about developing two tracks of reporting - one for dailies, one for longer form work. Every week, see how the longer form work has progressed - if at all."

    Thanks to the McCormick Foundation for sponsoring this two-day reporting symposium.

     

    Full Article | Comments (16)

    By Nancy Lane, president, Local Media Association

    Steve Moore, Illinois Chapter Board Member, American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, Chicago, IL

    Suicide & The Economic Downturn


    Steve Moore, Board Member, American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, delivered one of the most powerful presentations of the entire symposium. He shared intimate details about the death of his college-age son and urged reporters to be responsible when reporting on suicides in their communities. 

    Moore shared some stats to start the session:


    Full Article | Comments (14)

    By Nancy Lane, president, Local Media Association

    Community Stress - Budget Cuts & The Quality of Mental Health Services


    Story ideas from Marian Frattarola-Saulino, Executive Director, Values Into Action:

    • Group homes have been a failure and now serve as "mini institutions". Find out what group homes exist in your community and start asking questions about the funding, success stories, problems, etc. 
    • Look to grassroots organizations for access to people that are affected by intellectual disabilities to tell their stories (they are far more likely to give you access - these might be autism or cerebral palsy support groups for example). Report on success stories in addition to problem areas.
    • Look at non-profits in your community that serve the mental health field and examine their financial reports. Red flags include: too much money being spent on administrative costs or assets like buildings (when the building becomes more important than the services that are being offered). 
    • 9 out of 10 people that experience intellectual disabilities experience abuse (usually from care givers). This is a story that needs to be told so that families can recognize the warning signs and be proactive. Much of the abuse goes unreported.

    Saulino challenged the symposium attendees to help enact change in their communities by asking the tough questions, advocating for "people first" when it comes to government funding of mental health services and to forge relationships with a variety of providers in your community including grassroots organizations.

    Thanks to the McCormick Foundation for sponsoring this two-day reporting symposium. 

    Full Article | Comments (14)



    Kevin Orland, Deputy Leader, Bloomberg News U.S. Consumer Team, Chicago, IL, Tom Contiliano, Chief of Client Relations, Bloomberg News, Washington, DC; Bill Handy, Assistant Professor, Medill School, Northwestern University, Evanston, IL and Conrado “Sluggo” Rigor, Editor/Publisher, Filipino-American Bulletin, Seattle, WA

    By Nancy Lane, president, Local Media Association

    Bloomberg - Cash Flow Tells the Story

    Executives from Bloomberg News presented a session on the economy to SRI attendees in Chicago this morning (The Economy & Mental Health Symposium). Describing himself as a "forensic accountant", Tom Contiliano, chief of client relations for Bloomberg News, shared numerous examples of what to look for when covering companies of any kind (publicly-traded, government and non-profit). 

    At the top of the list for Contiliano is cash flow. He encouraged attendees to scrutinize a company's cash flow and especially compare it to prior year. It often is one of the first indicators when something is wrong. Other areas to look at: leadership, revenue, balance sheet and P&L statements. For non-profits, the 990 is the form that should be reviewed (available at IRS.gov or through the company as they are required by law to make them available). 

    The Bloomberg executives also encouraged attendees to start with the top five employers in their market and take a deep dive into their financials to better understand the big picture.

    Thanks to the McCormick Foundation for sponsoring this two-day reporting symposium. 

    Full Article | Comments (18)


    The Economy and Mental Health

    Bill Handy photo
    Bill Handy

    By Nancy Lane, president, Local Media Association
    Thanks to a grant from the Robert R. McCormick Foundation, 20 journalists were awarded scholarships to attend a two-day specialized reporting institute that takes place today and tomorrow in Chicago at the Sun-Times. The program is being led by Bill Handy, coordinator of Medill's Global Journalism Program (Northwestern University) and assistant  professor. 

    The opening session featured feedback from the attendees about the state of mental health and social service programs in their communities. Most of the attendees are sharing stories of dramatic cuts in all areas including women's services, assistance for veterans, mental health programs and more. Attendees are looking forward to learning more during the two days about how to cover these stories in the most effective and ethical way in the communities that they serve. 

    Stayed tuned for the key takeaways from this symposium posted live on the Local Media Association web site throughout the next two days.

    Thanks to the McCormick Foundation for sponsoring this two-day reporting symposium.

     

    Full Article | Comments (18)

    By Tanya Henderson, Local Media Association

    NNA Postal Chair, Max Heath spoke yesterday afternoon to Local Media Association members on the “Negotiated Service Agreement” (NSA) that gives Valassis a range of discount pricing from 20-36% for new marriage mail packages.  This agreement is currently under review with the PRC (Postal Regulatory Commission).

    Full Article | Comments (312)

    Register now for two half days of FREE sales training July 24 and 25

    The Local Media Association virtual conference is two weeks away! Have your staff register now! We have contracted with some of North America's top sales and management trainers to conduct these sessions including:

    • Steve Waterhouse, President, Waterhouse Group & Predictive Results
    • Mike Blinder, President, Blinder Group
    • Kelly Wirges, President and CEO, ProMax Training and Consulting, Inc.
    • Debbi Holzkamp, President and Director of Sales Training, HDS Premier Consulting
    • Renee Ward, Executive Vice President and Director of Sales Training, HDS Premier Consulting
    • Gary Moore, President, Insight Edge, Inc. / Media Sales Pro
    • Nancy Lane, President, Local Media Association
    • Shannon Kinney, President, Dream Local Digital

    Don't miss this opportunity for free training for your sales executives and management team!


    More Information  |  Register Online  |  Agenda

    Full Article | Comments (15)

    Enter to Win the Most Prestigious Award of the Year.   Sponsored by Local Media Association

    DEADLINE: Friday, July 27, 2012

    And so it begins...entries for Local Media Associations most recognized and prestigious contest of the year are now being accepted. The 2012 Newspaper of the Year Contest recognizes a thoughtfully developed style of presentation through editorial content, typography and advertising. This contest addresses just about everything: from headline writing and editorial layout to retail ad copy and news photography...everything is taken into consideration. Show everyone whose publication is the best - enter your newspapers today!

    Winning entries will be displayed and award winners recognized at Local Media Associations 2012 Fall Publishers' and Advertising Directors' Conference, September 11-14 at the Sheraton Atlanta Hotel, Atlanta, Georgia.

    Full Article | Comments (37)

    Community Journalists Chosen to Attend Reporting Symposium On Impacts of the Economic Crisis on Mental Health

    McCormick Foundation grant covers costs for two days of in-depth training co-hosted by Local Media Association Foundation and Associated Press Media Editors

    Community journalists from across North America have been selected to attend a two-day symposium to learn how to report local stories and develop multimedia reporting projects on the impacts of the great recession on mental health.

    The symposium, funded by a grant from The McCormick Foundation and co-hosted by Local Media Association (LMA) Foundation and the Association Press Media Editors (APME), is part of McCormick’s Specialized Reporting Institutes program. The training takes place July 16 and 17 in Chicago at the Chicago Sun-Times.

    Full Article | Comments (14)

    The 2013 Mega-Conference, sponsored by Local Media Association, SNPA and Inland Press Association will be held in New Orleans, LA in February.

    Dates are Feb. 18-20, 2013 at The Roosevelt New Orleans – one week after Mardi Gras.

    The successful joint 2012 conference took place in San Antonio, Texas.  More than 400 attendees gathered to hear "Transformation Through Innovation," the conference theme. Highlights included sessions on Daily Deals; Developing an In-House Digital Ad Agency and a rousing keynote by Kirk Davis, President and COO of GateHouse Media titled: Leadership, Change Management and Repositioning for Growth.

    Additional information will be announced soon.

    Full Article | Comments (45)

    Webinars include pre-conference update from national advertisers; important information regarding USPS and Valassis and free Virtual Ad Conference (6 webinars)

    Local Media Association has now posted the third quarter webinars and has confirmed many speakers including:

    * Zach Ahrens, Ad Director, Grand Forks Herald who will be speaking on going from successful print to successful digital sales.  Webinar will be held Tuesday, July 10th at 3:00 PM ET.
    * Max Heath, Postal Consultant, NNA, who will bring members up to date on the current Valassis and USPS issue.  Webinar will take place on Wednesday, July 11th at 1:00 PM ET
    * Matt Spahn, Founder & CEO, Planitretail LLC; Bridgit Wallace, Director, Buying, Novus Media, Inc. (and others TBA) will give information to members in order to prepare for one-on-one meetings in Atlanta at the Fall Publishers’ and Advertising Directors’ Conference.   Webinar will take place on Thursday, August 9th at 3:00 PM ET
    * Rebecca Capparelli, Director of Sales Training and Development, GateHouse Media will present on their successful Block & Prospect program.  Webinar is Thursday, August 23rd at 3:00 PM ET.
    * Kurt Sima, VP/Sr. Consultant, The Center for Sales Strategy will discuss “The Digital What and Why”.  Webinar will take place on Thursday, September 27th at 3:00 PM ET.

    For a complete list of free member, IMA and LMIA webinars, visit this link:

    http://www.localmedia.org/Webinars/UpcomingWebinars.aspx

    Also, don’t forget the free Virtual Ad Conference taking place July 24 and 25.  This is a series of free webinars for Local Media Association members focusing on sales (Day 1) and management (Day 2).  Visit this link for more information:

    http://www.localmedia.org/Conferences/VirtualAdConference.aspx

    Full Article | Comments (16)


    Publisher Jason Taylor revs up the crowd during the KidzExpo

    $2.5 million generated in the past three years

    By Tanya Henderson, Local Media Association

    When you listen to Lyndsi Sebastian and Angela Doggett from the Chattanooga Times Free Press talk about their events, you realize they are old pros. Sebastian and Doggett joined Shannon Kinney, author of the LMIA report on Event Marketing for a webinar that showcased the details of planning and executing local events.

    From expos to community banquets, the Times Free Press puts on an event like no other by leveraging their strengths.  As Kinney mentioned “no one else could put on an event of this caliber.”  With more than 10,000 in attendance for their recent Kidz Expo, who says newspapers are dying? 

    Full Article | Comments (34)

    Local Media Association’s Interactive Media Alliance (IMA) is an industry-wide initiative dedicated to providing members with timely information concerning all aspects of online publishing including content development, technical updates and advertising opportunities. The Interactive Media Alliance consists of publishers, editors, IT directors, new media developers and advertising personnel.

    Full Article | Comments (16)

    Now Available for purchase for only $259

    We are pleased to announce the June Local Media Innovation Alliance report: 360° Advertising Sales Strategies, is now available for purchase. This month’s report features the top takeaways from the recent WAN-IFRA study tour that focused on 360° advertising sales strategies. Nancy Lane, President Local Media Association, attended this event along with Local Media Foundation Chairman of the Board Steve Parker. Both returned inspired and eager to share our learnings with the industry.

    Full Article | Comments (13)

    2 Days of Sales Training from North America’s Leading Media Trainers!

    Local Media Association is adding a new member benefit this year. We understand that times are still tough and that training dollars are few and far between for many companies. We have responded to this reality by creating a two-day virtual advertising conference. Non-members and association partners are welcome to register for this event; one and two-day rates are available.

    This new event features two half-day sessions focusing on sales and management. All employees from LMA member companies are invited to join.

    Full Article | Comments (15)

    By Tanya Henderson, Advertising & Membership Relations Director

    That’s exactly what John Kimball of The John Kimball Group recommends when putting together a plan to tackle political advertising.  And, no, John is not suggesting self–reflection here, but rather looking within your own company for those that have a passion and understanding of politics.

    Having that champion along with clear, concise packaging and a bit of research can put you on the right track.   Kimball along with Tom Edmonds of Edmonds Associates and Kip Cassino of Borrell Associates says there a large number of funds available in this blockbuster political year. Or as Cassino refers to it: “The Flood of 2012.”

    Full Article | Comments (23)

    Take advantage of our early bird rates and save $100 on each registration!

    November 7 - Digital Agency One-Day Summit – NEW

    November 8 - Deals & Promotions One-Day Summit - Co-Sponsored by Second Street

    November 7-9 - Classified Multimedia Conference

    We are excited to offer three terrific programs this November at the Sheraton Chicago O'Hare Airport Hotel. Save $100 on each registration when you register early.

    Full Article | Comments (17)



    By Nancy Lane, President, Local Media Association


    The final meeting during last week’s West Coast Innovation Mission was a two-hour exchange to share top takeaways from the trip and to develop a list of follow up items.

    Top Takeaways included:
    • Google surveys: at least eight of the attendees were going to sign up right away to start using this revenue-producing product (click here more details)
    • Almost everyone in the group is going to identity the hottest opportunities in their market using the Borrell Compass report when they get home and then develop plans to exploit them.
    • Many are going to launch digital agency services in the very near future.
    • All are going to consider strategic partnerships. As one attendee said, “we are the pretty girl at the dance right now, everyone wants to dance with us”. For many, the Google opportunities were of great interest.
    • Several are going to certify their sales team to sell Google AdWords.
    • The group thinks that we need to come together more as an industry and work together on more projects.
    • Many want to incorporate e-commerce strategies beyond deals as a result of what they learned from fellow attendee Eric Bright from Deseret Digital.
    • Many are going to make changes to their culture as a result of attending the meetings with Google and Fisher. They liked the cohesive team atmosphere at Fisher and the TGIF meetings at Google in particular.
    • “Show print some love.” There needs to be more of a balance and we need to innovate on the print side too (message came from three different presentations).
    • Most are going to step up their social strategies on both the audience and advertising side.
    The full report, complete with all of the top takeaways will be available in the next few weeks. Contact Tanya Henderson to order your copy (tanya.henderson@localmedia.org).

    Full Article | Comments (105)


    Adam Burnham, Digital First

    By Nancy Lane, President, Local Media Association

    Journal Register Company is now in the very top tier when it comes to percent of total advertising coming from digital, surpassing even the McClatchy Company's impressive 22%. This has happened in a short time (less than three years) since John Paton declared that the company would follow a "digital-first" strategy.

    Full Article | Comments (63)

    By Nancy Lane, President, Local Media Association

    Innovation Mission attendees are visiting Google’s world headquarters today in Sunnyvale, Ca. In addition to the many media partnership opportunities, attendees also wanted to learn about the tremendous culture of innovation that exists. Chris Connelly from Google’s “People Operations” provided an inspiring session to open the day.

    When the company went public in 2004, Google’s founder proclaimed “We are not a conventional company. We do not intend to become one." The company grew from 3,000 to 33,000 employees since that time and they have been successful at maintaining an enviable culture that is based on freedom, teamwork and idea sharing.

    Full Article | Comments (39)

    Attendees from the West Coast Innovation Mission have been asked to provide some of their top takeaways and thoughts on what they’ve experienced during this week-long innovation tour.

    Dan Easton photo
    Dan Easton

    From Dan Easton, Co-Publisher, Victoria Advocate

    • Need to look at social channels beyond Facebook and Twitter.
    • Focus on what video content works online - not all of it works, and it's relatively costly to do.
    • Display real-time analytics in the newsroom to provide immediate feedback on what is driving traffic.
    Joe Boydston photo
    Joe Boydston

    From Joe Boydston, Vice President of Technology and New Media, Daily Republic

    • Wikipedia: Innovation is the process of making improvements to something established by introducing something better and, as a consequence, new.
    • AT&T holdings delivers on this by combining its technology, brand and business model based on scarcity.
    • The take away for me was inspired by a comment by @cleepost : we need to determine if it makes sense for us to pursue a partnership that provides lower net, but higher margin products. Does this compliment or distract from our goals?
    • AT&T technology and positioning is compelling. My question is : Does a national directory offering add durable value to our brand?

    Full Article | Comments (16)


    Nick Burgoyne, Executive Director, Business Development, YP .com pictured with Ben Shaw, Chief Digital Officer, Shaw Suburban Media


    By Nancy Lane, President, Local Media Association

     

    The West Coast Innovation Mission attendees spent the morning visiting with senior executives from YP.com, formerly AT&T Interactive. Their company sells over $1 billion dollars in digital revenue on their 170 online and mobile sites and apps. They have 75 million monthly uniques on YP.com and users conduct over 2 billion annual searches.

    Full Article | Comments (34)


    Highly Innovative Team at Black Press

    By Nancy Lane, President, Local Media Association

    The Innovation Mission spent most of the day on Tuesday visiting with top executives from Black Press's Canadian division. This highly innovative company makes no apologies for the value that they put on print. They shared their top revenue ideas (both print and digital) and hosted an inspiring day. Highlights from the visit include:

    • President & COO Rick O'Connor told the group " we are not in the digital advertising agency business -it’s a distraction that we don’t need”

    • They purchased a site a few years ago: Usedeverywhere.ca that now boasts 1.3 million UV’s per month and rivals Kijiji and Craigslist. It is a free classified site that makes money via upsells, banners, sponsorships and affiliate programs. Visit www.usedvictoria.ca for an example. All of the sites are localized by town. This is a very successful digital product for them. 

    • Events are huge for them, especially those focused on community leaders. A new one, "100 most influential people" is also driving a lot of revenue. 

    • Contests are also huge for them. Recent ones include: "Win a Sick Civic" and "The Intern" (similar to The Apprentice)

    • Their guiding principle: “The customer is the center of our focus”

    • Eight free dailies that were launched a few years ago are doing very well, especially in suburban markets

    • They instituted pay walls (they don't like that term - they call them e-subscriptions) for all of their paid products and in many cases the print circulation also increased as a result. They do NOT use the metered pay wall approach - it is "cold turkey". 

     

    Next up: AT&T Interactive and Using Borrell Compass Reports to Drive Revenue

    Full Article | Comments (18)



    Dave Schmall, Director of Digital Development, Swift Communications; Emily Walsh-Parry, MultiMedia Publisher, The Observer Group with Ioana Straeter, Executive Director, WAN-IFRA.

    IM West attendees on the start of a week-long tour of innovation!


    Travis Mayfield From Fisher Communications delivering a very passionate session on audience development and using tools of social media.

    Full Article | Comments (21)

    by Nancy Lane, President, Local Media Association

    Session two at Fisher Communications focused on content strategies. Their mantra is "original, unique, shareable".

    Highlights include:

    They are agnostic and will put their content anywhere (like pinterest for example)

    They suggest adding photos to your Facebook postings; will result in more shares, likes and views.

    "Time wasters are OK too". Some of their most viewed stories are just interesting (and may not even be tied to the local market. Example: Dick Clark's Flintstones style house for sale).

    They provided iPhones to all of their field crews (over 150 company wide) to send in photos and videos. After massive training (how to use the iPhone), it "just took off". Training was critical.

    Another mantra that they preach: "the biggest driver of new audience is the audience that we already have".

    They credit "real time analytics from Google" for helping with the culture change in the newsroom (showing which stories are getting the most views).

    Stay tuned for more updates throughout the day.

     

    Full Article | Comments (16)

    By Nancy Lane, President, Local Media Association

     

    Innovation Mission attendees are spending much of today at Fisher Communications in Seattle. This highly innovative media company owns over 125 local web sites and 13 TV stations in the Pacific Northwest.

    Full Article | Comments (16)

    Pictured from left:  Samantha Johnston, Executive Director, Colorado Press Association; Kimberly Wilson, President and Publisher,  Schurz Communications/The South Bend Tribune; Susan Cantrell, Vice President, Sales and Advertising, Lawrence Journal-World and Eric Bright, Vice President of E-Commerce, Deseret Digital Media

     

    By Nancy Lane, President, Local Media Association


    The Local Media Innovation Mission officially kicked off yesterday in Seattle with twenty senior level local media executives. Afternoon sessions featured key takeaways from the recent WAN-IFRA study tour and World Advertising Conference presented by Local Media Association president Nancy Lane and WAN-IFRA Executive Director, Publishing and Advertising, Ioana Strater.

    Full Article | Comments (21)

    The Local Media Innovation Alliance April Report, SoLoMo, is a fascinating case study coming out of Morris Communications. 

    SoLoMo stands for Social, Local, Mobile - and it is getting a lot of attention these days. Our report author Shannon Kinney spent a few days with the team in Savannah, GA, to understand it better and participate in related advertiser workshops.

    Full Article | Comments (16)

    What is the magic number when it comes to digital sales reps? That was the big question during Local Media Association’s webinar with Borrell Associates titled:  Assessing Local Digital Sales Forces.  During the webinar Pete Conti, Executive Vice President, answered the question and presented some interesting statistics.

    * There are some 80,000+  local account executives (24K+ in Newspapers; 16k+ in Radio; 15k+ in Directories; and 7k+ in TV and Pureplay)
    * The percentage of local account executives selling digital (85% in Newspapers; 80% in Directories; 75% in TV and 25% in Radio)
    * Newspapers have a higher percentage of dedicated digital reps (more than TV  and Radio)

    So how many reps do you need?  In many cases just having one dedicated person selling digital can make a huge difference.  When asked, Conti said that on average, one dedicated digital sales rep can bring in between $175-$200,000.

    Starting salaries for digital account executives average $44,000; the median is $35,000. To access the full report and receive a discount as an LMA member visit www.borrellassociates.com

    Full Article | Comments (16)

    Live from the Local Media Association/Blinder Group/Florida Press Association Revenue Summit

    By Al Cupo, Vice President, Local Media Association

    From the presentation ‘Boost Your Revenues by Turning-on Your Sales People’
    Presented by: Pason Gaddis, President & Group Publisher, Florida Weekly

    Pason Gaddis photo
    Pason Gaddis

    4 Simple Steps to Creating a World Class Team

    1. Culture - Create an entrepreneurial atmosphere.
      • Allow your self-starters to grow.
      • Be a champion of team work.
      • Provide the support necessary for sales staff to be successful.

    Full Article | Comments (20)

    Live from the Local Media Association/Blinder Group/Florida Press Association Revenue Summit

    By Nancy Lane, President, Local Media Association

    The Power of Print

    Revenue Summit Charter photo
    Gareth Charter talking with Thomas Byrd, President/COO, Independent Newsmedia Inc. after his presentation.

    Charter kicked off the session with this announcement, "Two of our weeklies just published the largest billing issues in their history. The Landmark - $100,946 and Milbury-Sutton Chronicle - $18,013. Average issue for The Landmark is $20,000."

    Full Article | Comments (82)

    Live from the Local Media Association/Blinder Group/Florida Press Association Revenue Summit

    By Nancy Lane, President, Local Media Association

    Bruce Faulmann photo
    Bruce Faulmann

    From Bruce Faulmann, VP Sales & Marketing, Tampa Bay Times

    Seller Comp Plan – Key Performance Indicators: they influence behavior & drive performance. “No more than 5 KPI’s”:

    • They measure active accounts (# per month- ranges from 15 to 40+)
    • New account growth (# per month – ranges from 1 -7)
    • Customer retention – 80% is the goal from month to month (the # that advertised last month that also advertised this month)
    • Revenue diversification – any healthy business does this - % print and % digital/everything else. It is a custom # for each rep.

    Performance to budget: 4 KPI’s: +45%; 3 KPI’s: +20%; 2 KPI’s -10%; 1 KPI -20%; 0 KPI -25%. If they miss their budget but make all 4 KPI’s, he pays them $850.

    Full Article | Comments (119)

    Live from the Local Media Association/Blinder Group/Florida Press Association Revenue Summit

    By Al Cupo, Vice President, Local Media Association

    Matt Coen photo
    Matt Coen

    From the Session ‘Evolving Opportunities with Deals, Promotions and Contests’
    Presented by Matt Coen, President, Second Street

    Promotions
    Online promotions will continue to grow and will outpace other forms of online advertising in the next several years. Promotions are all about the ability for people to interact with businesses in their market; it’s what the advertisers want.

    Benefits of a successful online promotion include:

    • Increases awareness / builds audience
    • Generates ad revenue / develops sponsors
    • Collects email addresses / grows user database

    Promotion Opportunities to Consider:

    • Sponsored contests (football winner picks, wedding contests, cutest kids, pizza payoff, lucky dog photos, etc).
    • Client-centric agency contests tied to advertisers’ Facebook pages. The local publication makes these contests work by providing a turnkey program to individual businesses that includes design, promotion and tracking services.

    Full Article | Comments (20)

    Live from the Local Media Association/Blinder Group/Florida Press Association Revenue Summit

    By Nancy Lane, President, Local Media Association

    Revenue Summit Attendees photo

    At the start of the second day, Mike Blinder asked attendees to share their top take aways/action items from the first day. More than 20 hands shot up immediately to share with the group. In no particular order, these were the top ones:

    1. Start a new business development team and hire hunters (many mentioned this in reference to Chris Edward's presentation from Cedar Rapids - featured yesterday on this site)
    2. Have your sales reps collect video testimonials from their clients and share them at the weekly sales meeting. This came from Jim Doyle's "8 to be Great". Jim is the top sales trainer to the TV industry.
    3. Many liked the iPad app that Brainworks showcased during the working lunch. It is designed for sales reps and features a location-based map that shows them businesses in the area that are and are not advertising with the paper. Helps with prospecting while on the road.
    4. Big format banner ads coming out of Europe (from Nancy Lane's presentation on WAN-IFRA study tour) - many are eager to experiment with them
    5. Add more digital expertise to their team (came from several presentations)
    6. Have the sales team write their own job descriptions and work with each rep on a new business development plan
    7. Getting back to sales basics with the account executives (attendees expressed their plans in a number of ways)

    Full Article | Comments (19)

    Live from the Local Media Association/Blinder Group/Florida Press Association Revenue Summit

    Session Focused on 8 Hot Trends from Recent WAN-IFRA tour

    Nancy Lane photo
    Nancy Lane

    Revenue Summit attendees were intrigued and inspired by some of the top trends coming out of the most innovative media houses in Europe. Lane's top takeaways included:

    1. Multi-Channel Offerings are the Norm
    2. European Media Houses Are Making Huge Investments in Mobile & Tablets
    3. Sales Structure – Digital Experts Support Sales Teams
    4. Home Page Rules – Beautiful Design; Impressive Revenue Results
    5. Editorial Supports 360 Advertising Strategies
    6. Social Strategies Focus on Facebook
    7. Print is Important; Leverage It to Grow Digital
    8. Increased Investment in Video or “TV”

    Full Article | Comments (41)

    Live from the Local Media Association/Blinder Group/Florida Press Association Revenue Summit

    By Nancy Lane, President, Local Media Association

    Chris Edwards photo
    Chris Edwards

    From Chris Edwards, VP Sales/Customer Care, SourceMedia (Cedar Rapids, IA - newspaper and broadcast brands)

    New Business Development Team formed in early 2011:

    • Prospect and sell non-customers only
    • Transition new accounts to the legacy teams
    • Work as a “hit squad” for projects, new markets and new product launches

    The Good:

    • Drove an average of 11 new clients per month; 27% bought multiple products
    • Created better working relationships between the teams (legacy reps started asking for their help on sales calls)
    • Special section revenue was up in every pub
    • Vendor tab revenue was up
    • Created a pub designed to re-introduce them to surrounding small markets
    • Provided the best feedback on new products
    • Cross Roads – small town focus on fringe of circ area went from $2,500 to over $50,000 in advertising revenue; these areas also did over $20,000 in net “deals” revenue in 2011
    • 64% of deals revenue was sold by new biz reps (they declared no account protection for daily deals when it started to get tough to fill the pipeline). Gary’s Food was the 2nd largest deal in Second Street’s network at the time (small grocer) that grossed $97,000. Legacy reps started teaming up with new biz reps on deals and splitting commissions.

    Full Article | Comments (24)

    Live from the Local Media Association/Blinder Group/Florida Press Association Revenue Summit

    By Nancy Lane, President, Local Media Association

    Steve Waterhouse photo
    Steve Waterhouse

    From the keynote address:
    Turbo Charge Your Sales Team: How to Get the Best Out of Your Sales People
    Presented by: Steve Waterhouse
    , President, Waterhouse Group & Predictive Results

    Actions of winners:

    • Winners do the right thing.
    • Winners have a plan (ask your sales reps to show you their plan for the week – if they don’t, send them home to develop their plan and tell them to come back the next morning).
    • Winners follow the plan; they don’t deviate from the plan. Think about the french fry maker at McDonalds. How many times do they get to burn the fries before they lose their job? Why is it different in our industry?
    • Winning companies train the plan (Applebees example for wait staff – 2 weeks learning the menu/process and then a week to shadow another waiter. Why would our industry settle for less training?).

    Full Article | Comments (41)

    Since we’ve changed our name to Local Media Association, it’s been a very positive experience for the association. We know the name change brings with it the opening of new doors and opportunities. For
    instance, the 2012 Innovation Mission has some amazing tour stops including Google and AT&T Interactive which arguably may have been harder to confirm as Suburban Newspapers of America.

    However, there has been some visible “head scratching” to me in e-mails from our members about the three acronyms we use that are all very close in nature. I thought I would take this opportunity to update everyone on the differences in these names. Here is a short glossary:

    Full Article | Comments (18)

    In partnership with NewspaperToolbox
    Deadline for Entries: June 1, 2012**

    Our community newspapers are full of amazing local news that we're all proud of, and behind it all stands hard-working advertising and classified departments. The annual Local Media Association Advertising and Promotions Contest recognizes your creative hard work throughout North America. With thirty categories just waiting to be won -- from Best Ad Series, to Best Cover Page to Best Shopping Area Promotion -- this contest covers the gamut. Enter today!

     

    Full Article | Comments (38)

    Live from the WAN-IFRA Study Tour

    By Nancy Lane, President, Local Media Association

    A&N Media, parent company of The Daily Mail and Metro (London), wanted to develop ideas from the ground up.

    After visiting companies like Starbuck's, Dell, Virgin Atlantic and Glaxo Smith Kline, the head of their "Idea Management Process" launched their idea factory web site - Let's Start Something Brilliant.

    This provides a platform for employees to share their ideas. A top prize is offered ($500 Pounds + a share of the profit) and lots of subsidiary prizes. The winner will also be part of the new idea implementation team.

    Full Article | Comments (20)

    Live from the WAN-IFRA Study Tour

    By Nancy Lane, President, Local Media Association

    WAN-IFRAl photo
    Study tour participants representing 9 countries and 4 continents visited with 15 different companies in Europe over 5 days to learn best practices in 360 advertising sales strategies.

    Separation between advertising and editorial is extremely important in the U.K. but the two departments have found a way to work together when it comes to 360 selling strategies. Consider these two case studies:

    From The Telegraph:

    • Telegraph Create was developed to produce multi-media, non-standard campaigns for advertisers. Two-three years later, the team consists of 50 FTE's and is the fastest growing segment of their business (growing at 20-30% per year).
    • Telegraph Create is "where brands, content and consumers meet"

    Full Article | Comments (25)

    Live from the WAN-IFRA Study Tour

    By Nancy Lane, President, Local Media Association

    WAN-IFRA Google photo

    The WAN-IFRA study tour met with top executives from Google's Paris office yesterday to learn more about the various media partnership opportunities available. Much of the discussion focused on Google Currents.

    Highlights of Google Currents product:

    • Currents takes feeds from publishers and presents the content in an easy to consume way (like a magazine)
    • They said to view this product as "in between your web site and app"
    • They view Currents as less restrictive and less expensive than news reading applications (Currents is offered for free; an Apple app can cost as much as $10,000)

    Full Article | Comments (44)

    Live from the WAN-IFRA Study Tour

    By Nancy Lane, President, Local Media Association

    WAN-IFRA France photo

    The study tour hit Paris yesterday and included visits with three of the largest media houses (Le Figaro, Le Monde and 20 Minutes). In this highly competitive market we witnessed tremendous innovation.

    Highlights include:

    • Digital accounts for 23% of total ad revenue at the two paid dailies and 10% at 20 Minutes.
    • All three just launched a social reader app on Facebook. They are able to monetize this by selling 2 premium spots (and keeping 100% of the revenue).
    • A great deal of attention is paid to the home page of their web sites. Be sure to check them out (www.lefigaro.fr, www.lemonde.fr and www.20minutes.fr). They feature beautiful design with each taking a different approach.
    • All are making mobile a major priority and some are seeing as much of 50% of their traffic on mobile devices and tablets.

    Stay tuned for more highlights soon.

    Full Article | Comments (15)

    Live from the WAN-IFRA Study Tour

    By Nancy Lane, President, Local Media Association

    From a fascinating presentation - Artur Kobryn, Managing Partner & Head of International, MediaCom International

    MediaCom is a global agency with offices all over the world. They are number one in Germany and the U.K. and number three in the world. WPP is the parent company. Clients include: P&G, Universal Studios, Ikea, Bayer and many others. Kobryn addressed the changing media landscape:

    • Media fragmentation is not new and in fact, digitalization is increasing media consumption.
    • His advice to the industry, "stop talking about digital media - it is simply media". He reminded us that no one says "color TV" anymore.
    • The tablet is "the next best thing" -plan accordingly. "The world has turned into a screen." Print will stay relevant but will be adapted to tablets in the future.
    • According to Kobryn, free is the wrong model online. "Why give valuable content for free?"
    • Core challenge today is to create relevance for their clients. Advertisers are not interested in click through rates.

    Full Article | Comments (19)


    Local Media Virtual Advertising Conference – July 24-25, 2012
    FREE to Local Media Association Members

     
    Local Media Association is adding a new member benefit this year. We understand that times are still tough and that training dollars are few and far between for many companies. We are responding to this reality by creating a two-day virtual advertising conference and it’s FREE to LMA members.
     
    This new event will feature two half-day sessions focusing on sales and management.  All employees from LMA member companies are invited to join.

    Full Article | Comments (21)

    Live from the WAN-IFRA Study Tour

    By Nancy Lane, President, Local Media Association

    Highlights from visit with Axel Springer, Germany's largest media house:

    • They sell a lot of full page takeovers on their website. They sell this at a premium ($100,000 Euros/day across all sites) and they sell out every day.
    • Branding and performance campaigns are designed to significantly increase click conversion rates.
    • All of their products are available on mobile versions. They sell takeover and flip ads on the mobile home pages. The iPad is also very important and they have versions created specifically for tablets.
    • Mobile is still single digits but it is growing. They believe that "you must have state of the art opportunities on your mobile devices."

    Full Article | Comments (15)

    September 11-14, 2012 – Sheraton Atlanta Hotel

    The Future is Local
    Disruption Presents Opportunities; Plan Now for the Long Term

    An unbelievable program has been developed for this year's annual gathering of publishers and advertising directors. "It's simply our best program yet", said Nancy Lane, president, Local Media Association, "a must-attend for sure." Conference Chair Jennifer Parker (publisher & editor of CrossRoadsNews) added, "Participants will find long term solutions to grow their print, online and mobile business, and get to hear directly from publishers who are having successes right now." and committee member Pete Bakke (Director Digital Media, Wick Communications) said, "Terrific program. I sure would like to be in two places at once and attend every breakout session. They all sound great." The entire all-star committee is very excited about the program (see program for complete list).

    More than two dozen media buyers have been invited to participate in the one-on-one meetings and already many of them have confirmed including representatives from Staples, Centro, Geomentum, Vertis/Lowes, Alloy Media, planitretail, Valassis & more. As always, these meetings are scheduled on a first-come, first-serve basis in order of when the conference registrations are received so register early and let HQ know of your intention to participate (email your meeting preferences to hq@localmedia.org).

    Full Article | Comments (39)

    Live from the WAN-IFRA Study Tour

    By Nancy Lane, President, Local Media Association

    WAN-IFRA Uppsala photo
    Study tour participants with Uppsala Nya Tidning Vice President of Sales & Marketing Theo Blanco. Fifth from left is Local Media Foundation Board Chair Steve Parker.

    Uppsala Nya Tidning serves the university town of Uppsala located one hour from Stockholm. Their daily has a circulation of approximately 57,000. Highlights from this very interesting visit with Theo Blanco, VP Sales & Marketing:

    • Sales reps are not allowed to sell less than 3 products.
    • They developed an in-house agency called UNiT. Product offerings include web development, mobile, TV, competitive media & more.

    Full Article | Comments (64)

    Live from the WAN-IFRA Study Tour

    By Nancy Lane, President, Local Media Association

    From meeting with Anders Berglund, Sales Director, Aftonbladet (Stockholm, Sweden)

    Fascinating visit with Sweden's largest media house. Headlines include:

    • Mobile will represent $6 - $10 million Euro this year. It is "no longer a small business for us."
    • A few years ago the transformation was from print to online; today it is online to mobile.
    • Aftonbladet.se has 4 M UV; mobile site is 1.8 M UV. Some early mornings and late evenings they have more visitors to their mobile site than desktop.
    • 2012 will be the first year that online revenue will surpass print for them ($50 million Euro in online; $45 M Euro in print).

    Full Article | Comments (16)

    Mobile Strategies Report

    "A new disruptor is about to wreak havoc... and that disruptor is mobile." ~ Gordon Borrell, CEO, Borrell Associates

    The latest Local Media Innovation Alliance (LMIA) report examines a number of mobile strategies being employed by local media companies. These companies are all dedicating significant internal resources to launch a mobile strategy with the understanding that the payoff/ROI will not be immediate. They are viewing this strategy as an investment in their future.

    This is a great report that contains 22 pages of case study information.

    A corresponding webinar is planned for May 1, 2012, at 11:00 am ET. This is an opportunity to ask specific questions and learn more about from the companies profiled in the report.

    Full Article | Comments (16)

    Who says print is losing ground? At 160 pages The Landmark surely isn’t. This is the largest issue in the history of this paid circulation weekly newspaper in the Worcester, Massachusetts area. The issue included a 32-page “Hey Kids” section focused on area family activities.

    Full Article | Comments (17)

    20 SCHOLARSHIPS FOR COMMUNITY JOURNALISTS TO BE AWARDED

    All costs covered to attend this specialized two-day symposium in Chicago

    The LMA Foundation and the Associated Press Media Editors have been awarded a McCormick Foundation grant to conduct a special two-day symposium to educate community journalists on how to uncover local stories on the impacts of the current economic crisis on the mental health of North American families and their communities.

    The symposium will take a deep dive into this subject and will feature top speakers from the academic world, as well as journalists who cover highly-specialized aspects of this topic. The ultimate goal is to provide scholarship recipients with a host of tools and information to better cover the topic at a local level in their communities. Follow-up webinars with symposium attendees will also be part of this comprehensive learning experience.

    Scholarship applications are due by April 20; click here to access the application form. The symposium takes place July 16 - 17 in Chicago (air, hotel and meals are included). Special thanks to the Sun-Times Media Group for hosting this event.

    Editors and reporters are eligible to apply. Special consideration will be given to those who are in a position to drive the coverage of this topic at their newspaper. Depending on the size of the paper, this may be the editor, an assignment editor or a reporter. These scholarships are only being awarded to community journalists who work at daily newspapers with a circulation of 100,000 or less or for weekly newspapers. A number of slots have been reserved for weekly newspaper editors and for smaller dailies under 10,000 circulation. The goal is to have a diverse audience.

    For more information, click here.

    Full Article | Comments (30)

    Recognizing that collaboration in the industry has never been more important, the California Newspaper Publishers Association (CNPA) has joined forces with the Local Media Association (formerly Suburban Newspapers of America) to offer certain products and services to their members for reduced fees and a revenue-share.

    Starting now, members of CNPA will be able to participate in the following Local Media Association programs at reduced rates (lower than non-member rates):

    • Sales certification program (a joint venture between Local Media Association, Borrell Associates and Motivate America) – a true certification program that features web-based modules and a test that requires a 90% grade or higher
    • Local Media Innovation Alliance – a monthly research club that focuses on emerging trends, sustainable business models and digital revenue growth. The LMIA produces a monthly report in a case study format and includes a webinar with representatives from the featured companies. Topics include: Digital Agency, Daily Deals 2.0, Using Open Source Software, Social Strategies, Event Marketing & more.
    • Webinars – a diverse mix of training and educational webinars, including many with a revenue-growth focus.
    • Conferences – access to Local Media Association conferences and events

    Full Article | Comments (18)

    Mike Blinder photo
    Mike Blinder
    Jim Doyle photo
    Jim Doyle
    Kevin McCrudden photo
    Kevin McCrudden
    Steve Waterhouse photo
    Steve Waterhouse

    All you need is three days in Tampa, Florida to jump-start your sales and increase revenue. Join media colleagues during this highly anticipated revenue summit taking place May 9-11. The summit, brought to you by The Blinder Group, Local Media Association and Florida Press Association is geared to showcase new and substantial revenue streams and best practices from a diverse mix of local media companies. Designed for senior level managers and executives focusing on local SMBs, you won’t be disappointed with the top level speakers and published authors/trainers at this event including:

    • Mike Blinder, President of The Blinder Group and author of Survival Selling
    • Jim Doyle, President of Jim Doyle and Associates and author of Just Don’t Make A Sale, Make A Difference
    • Kevin L. McCrudden, President of Motivate America and author of U – Who Are U?
    • Steve Waterhouse, Founder and CEO of Waterhouse Group and author of The Team Selling Solution and Ending the Blame Game: 20 Rules to Live By

    Revenue sessions include:

    • Turbo-Charge Your Sales Team
    • The Digital Agency/360 Selling
    • Evolving Opportunities with Promotions, Daily Deals, & Contests
    • Streamline the Sales Process & Watch Your Revenue Grow
    • SMBs - Are you Aggressively Pursuing these Local Dollars?
    • Plus - Many More Revenue Generating Ideas!

    Click here for more information and to register

    Full Article | Comments (17)

    Al Cupo, Vice President, Local Media Association

    An Outsider’s View of Gannett, Now from the Inside


    This morning, Maryam Banikarim, CMO, Gannett Corp Inc., shared nine rules for media in a world that has gone local:

    1. News Comes from Anywhere
      Bloggers, social sites, user generated content, etc. Use all available sources when covering the local market.
    2. Interns are the New Boss
      Senior executives should always be listening to new hires and interns. Gannett has seen great success with their ‘New Talent Development’ program.
    3. Relevance Over Rules
      Serve your audience the way they want to be served regardless of what has been standard operating procedure in the past.
    4. Don’t Be Afraid to Share the Process
      Let people know where you are when breaking a story – update frequently and be transparent throughout the process.

    Full Article | Comments (16)

    By Al Cupo

    Deseret Digital Media:
    The Anatomy of Transformation


    Presented by Clark Gilbert, CEO; Chris Lee, VP, Digital Products; Mike Petroff, COO; Eric Bright, VP, E-commerce; Todd Handy, VP, New Media Sales; and Dale Darling, VP, Digital Direct Sales

    In a one-hour plus presentation titled The Anatomy of Transformation, the panel of Deseret Digital Media executives discussed seven big ideas currently underway at Deseret Digital Media.

    Gilbert and Lee covered the first two ideas related to content innovation: differentiate content and publish digital-only content.

    Gilbert noted that in the past, publishers were comfortable providing content for everyone, but now they ask the question, "What can we be the best at in the world?" That question resulted in Deseret identifying six areas of content related to faith- and family-oriented issues that drives their editorial content. According to Lee, this approach has grown both reach and audience.

    They also rely heavily on remote contributors through their Deseret Connect program. This user-generated initiative now has more than 2,000 contributors who are only paid if the story appears in print – meaning all digital content is submitted voluntarily and without compensation. Money does not drive the content contributors to submit content; instead, they appreciate the recognition and feedback they receive.

    Full Article | Comments (16)

    By Nancy Lane, president, Local Media Association

    Gordon Borrell photo
    Gordon Borrell

    From Gordon Borrell's opening remarks:

    • $96 billion is the forecast for local ad spending in 2012 – will be $106 billion in 2016; still not back to 2008 levels of $108 billion.
    • Promotions – “that’s where the money is” – Gordon Borrell. Couponing is driving this. Online just became the # 1 source for coupons (12-14% share) in many markets.
    • Media share – mobile is going to skyrocket in next 3-4 years; online is going to dip. By 2016 88% of all local online advertising will be delivered on a mobile device.
    • Local online will show strong growth this year and for the next few years.
    • Change in local online ad formats – targeted display will skyrocket (+800+% by 2016); streaming video will also be up. Untargeted display and paid search will be down.
    • By 2013, online will become #1 category of advertising – surpassing newspapers for the first time.
    • In 2011, traditional local media companies controlled 91% of all advertising, including half of all locally spent online advertising.

    Everyone is encouraged to join the Borrell group on linkedin – go to Local Advertising & Marketing Trends to join.

    Looking forward:

    • Bloodletting is over for (most) newspapers
    • Yellow pages faces slow motion demise
    • Direct mail entering the “perfect storm”
    • A new disruptor is about to wreak havoc (mobile)
    • Medium companies are shrinking (not newspapers, radio, etc.)
    • Media companies are going to morph and move forward

    Be sure to check back often as Nancy Lane and Al Cupo will be providing updates from this very exciting conference.

    Full Article | Comments (28)

    If you said newspapers, you are wrong. As Gordon Borrell of Borrell Associates pointed out on a recent webinar “The Quiet Revolution Reshaping Local Media” it is not newspapers or yellow pages or even television, it’s digital since all of those mediums employ digital. According to Borrell singular “medium” companies will begin to shrink in the future and media companies will morph and survive. “New media peels off growth from older media and never kills off its primary competitor.”

    Newspapers do currently have the top share of advertising but that will soon change. By 2016 Borrell predicts that online will dominate with 29% share and newspapers will be second with 21%.

    Full Article | Comments (16)

    Local Media Association members have the opportunity to register for Friday’s webinar being conducted by The Center for Sales Strategy in conjunction with CNPA (California Newspaper Publishers Association). The webinar is 30 minutes in length and is open to the first 500 members that register from Local Media Association and CNPA.

    Kurt Sima, a VP/Sr. Consultant at the Center for Sales Strategy (CSS) will host How to Build Proposals that Close. Kurt works with newspapers to increase revenue by improving salespeople’s focus and expertise.

    Click here to register.

    *Please note when making your time choices that the webinar is being conducted in Pacific Standard Time.

    A special thanks to CNPA for making this available to Local Media Association members!

    Full Article | Comments (19)

    By Tanya Henderson, Advertising & Membership Relations Director, Local Media Association

    As many you are springing into deals action, you may want to take note of a new strategy by GateHouse’s Canton Repository as they recently held a Demystifying Deals workshop with nearly 50 local businesses participating.

    Mike Blinder of The Blinder Group stepped out of his more traditional selling role and educated business decision makers on how to get into the deals space with the local newspaper. Canton’s goal: 50 deals in two weeks. The idea is to fill the pipeline so you are always ahead of the curve by having a deal scheduled. According to Blinder the “deals process needs extra hand holding.” Chris White, General Manager of The Repository agreed. “We’re not selling anything. We’re asking for a cut on the back end” which is new for sales reps. Canton has recruited a deals specialist to work with the sales reps at closing the sales. According to White “There’s a natural close if we can engage the prospect with a concept.” Both the specialist and the sales rep are commissioned at the close of the deal.

    Full Article | Comments (18)

    Study tours and information sharing are the main goals

    The World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers is known for their high quality study tours and now Local Media Association members will be able to attend these tours for WAN-IFRA member rates. In a reciprocal agreement, WAN-IFRA members will also be invited to attend the annual Local Media Innovation Mission for the reduced rates as well.

    Both organizations have also agreed to share information on current trends and hot new business models. Local Media Association president Nancy Lane and Local Media Foundation Board Chair Steve Parker will attend the upcoming 360° Advertising Sales Strategies Tour taking place in Europe this April. Lane will serve as the primary author of a report on the key findings to be shared with members of both organizations.

    "Europe is ahead of us in the area of digital agency services", said Lane, "When we visited Upsala Nya Tidnings in Sweden during the 2008 Scandinavia Innovation Mission, they were just launching a full blown agency. We were extremely impressed with their plans and can't wait to revisit them during this tour to learn about their progress."

    Full Article | Comments (27)

    from Nancy Lane, President, Local Media Association


    Focus. Urgency. Passion.

    Kirk Davis photo
    Kirk Davis

    Kirk Davis, President & COO, of GateHouse Media wowed conference attendees with an inspirational keynote on Tuesday at the Mega-Conference. His three favorite words - focus, urgency and passion - were evident throughout the presentation.

    There are five areas of concentration that Davis covered:

    1. Drive permanent structural cost realignment to fund growth and innovation
    2. Accelerate digital growth in revenue and audience
    3. Grow consumer revenue (including circulation) in both print and digital
    4. Preserve the power of print by stabilizing ad revenue and improving the product
    5. Develop and execute new businesses by leveraging our core strengths and expanding beyond our existing geographical footprint

    Full Article | Comments (17)

    Executives from the Tulsa World, The Ottawa Herald and the Columbia Daily Tribune — three newspapers that have shifted their content behind paywalls — speaking at the Key Excutives Mega Conference in San Antonio told newspapers that the shift to paid content was nothing to fear, offering up their papers' success as the benefits of paywalls.

    NetNewsCheck logoTo learn more about this, click here to read "Newspapers: Don't Fear Paywall Plunge," by Michael Depp, Editor of NetNewsCheck.

    Full Article | Comments (17)

    from Nancy Lane, President, Local Media Association


    Digital Agencies - Hot Opportunity

    Keith Wilson photo
    Keith Wilson

    Lessons Learned from Keith Wilson, Publisher, Kingsport Times-News

    • Don't quote fixed rates - go hourly
    • Don't host web sites on your own servers
    • 3 minute videos take 4 hours to edit; price accordingly
    • You are selling ideas - not production
    • When estimating a job, double the time your designer tells you
    • Every web site that you design must include a marketing campaignThe best leads will come from your print staff
    • The only thing you have to sell is the creative talent of your staff - hire talent

    Full Article | Comments (109)

    Local newspapers starting to navigate the murky waters of paid content need to develop a good strategy that puts content on the free side and the paid side of the wall — and perhaps come up with a better word than "paywall" — if they want to drive revenue in the digital world, according to executives speaking at the Key Executives Mega Conference in San Antonio, Texas. Excutives also emphasized the need for increased collaboration in the industry, as well as taking advantage of various digital platforms — especially tablets.

    NetNewsCheck logoTo learn more about this, click here to read "Execs: Collaboration Key to Papers' Future," by Michael Depp, Editor of NetNewsCheck.

    Full Article | Comments (19)

    Suburban newspapers see digital as a major front for growth and are rapidly adapting to dominate the online news and advertising space in their local markets, according to Jon Rust, chairman of the Local Media Association and co-president of Rust Communications. Rust and the LMA are in San Antonio this week for the Key Executives Mega Conference, sponsored by his association along with the Inland Press Association, Southern Newspaper Publishers Association and Texas Press Association. Follow NetNewsCheck today and tomorrow for full coverage of the conference.

    NetNewsCheck logoTo learn more about this, click here to read "Suburban Papers Target Digital Ad Lead," by Michael Depp, Editor of NetNewsCheck.

    Full Article | Comments (18)

    Site Visits Include Google, Fisher Communications, AT&T Interactive, Black Press and The McClatchy Company

    Register Today - Tour is Limited to First 20 Registrations

    The Local Media Foundation has set an exciting agenda for the 2012 Innovation Mission. This is the third Innovation Mission conducted by the association’s foundation who’s goal is to see innovation happening in “real time” at some of the most progressive companies and media houses. The week-long tour is intended to expose attendees to some of the best minds in the media and technology worlds.

    Highlights include:

    • Full day at Google including access to an invite-only private media partner event
    • Half day private session with Gordon Borrell - Driving Revenue Using Compass Reports
    • Bonus - all attendees will receive a customized Compass report (included in registration fee)
    • Half day with AT&T Interactive focusing on mobile and digital agency success (pending confirmation)
    • Five hour visit to Fisher Communications, winner of Borrell's Innovator of the Year award
    • Visits with some of North America's most progressive media companies including The McClatchy Company and Black Press + bonus visits with the president of the Canadian Newspaper Association and senior executive from WAN-IFRA (World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers)
    • Digital immersion - all attendees will tweet, blog and share the learnings throughout the trip (help will be provided)

    Full Article | Comments (18)

    Last week, we announced the Local Media Revenue Summit will take place May 9-10, 2012, at the DoubleTree Westshore Hotel in Tampa, Florida. An additional bonus day of programming will be held on May 11. The summit is a joint effort among The Blinder Group, Local Media Association and the Florida Press Association.

    The Blinder Group has created a specific website for the conference with fantastic testimonials, the full conference agenda and a listing of top-notch speakers for the event. Make sure you add this conference to your calendar – you won’t want to miss it. Visit http://www.blindersummit.com for more information.

    Full Article | Comments (20)

    The Local Media Association Fall Publishers’ and Advertising Directors’ Conference will be held September 11-14 at the Sheraton Atlanta Hotel, Atlanta Georgia. Room rates are $159 (single/double occupancy) per night plus tax.

    The Fall Publishers’ and Advertising Directors’ Conference is Local Media Association’s premiere conference. Along with a top notch agenda and individual tracks for both publishers and advertising executives, newspaper attendees have the unique opportunity to meet with media buyers and advertising representatives of national companies. The scheduling of these personal, one-on-one meetings is free with conference registration. In addition, you’ll learn about the new technology, products and services provided by the association’s associate member vendor companies. Watch your email for more information. Questions? Contact Local Media Association headquarters at 888-486-2466.

    Full Article | Comments (21)

    Local Media Association presented the Major Account Outlook last week via conference call with Steve Winslow of Best Buy, Steve Mueller of GeoMentum and Tyler Kelly of Centro. The purpose of the call was to give members the opportunity to ask questions and review plans for 2012. They all are firm believers in community newspapers with local editorial content. “We send insertion orders to 4,500 newspapers every week” said Mueller. Content is critical to them and they are looking for information on enhanced distribution (i.e. social media) as people consume media differently. And all of this “becomes part of the psychology as we try to connect with customers,” said Mueller.

    According to Winslow “we want the newspaper to be the eyes and ears in the market.” It’s critical to know growth demos, market shifts, etc. “It’s important to keep us updated” on changes. When they are placing advertising they are looking for the 40-60% penetration in a market.

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    Local Media Association is pleased to announce that the Local Media Revenue Summit will take place May 9-10, 2012, at the DoubleTree Westshore hotel in Tampa, Florida. An additional bonus day of programming will be held on May 11th. The summit is a joint effort among The Blinder Group, Local Media Association and the Florida Press Association.

    The program will tackle the best case studies to showcase new and innovative revenue streams. It was designed to include best practices from a diverse mix of local media companies regardless of platform. Senior level advertising managers and executives that focus on local SMB's as their bread and butter will not want to miss this one-of-a-kind summit that will expose you to new ideas and new ways to engage your customers.

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    By Tanya Henderson, Advertising & Membership Relations Director

    An’ I don’t give a damn ‘bout my reputation
    The world’s in trouble, there’s no communication...
    Lyrics from Joan Jett’s “Bad Reputation”

    More than 30 years later…a lot has changed. Joan may still not care, but in today’s word-of-mouth world, businesses need to be a step ahead and understand how they are perceived. We’ve all heard of the phrase that “perception is reality” and today that is never truer with people commenting, blogging and reviewing their experience for the world to see. In an IMA Reputation Management webinar last week, Shannon Kinney, Founder and Client Success Officer of dreamlocal shared their company’s philosophy and strategies when working with clients. It’s more than providing technology to a client. You have to be constantly monitoring a brand, their listings, search and directories.

    They monitor 125 web sites and they are looking for brand mentions, social mentions and things that should be more obvious that may be overlooked. She mentions a client who had great reviews and comments but when checking their address online, it was wrong. People were going to that address and the sales were scooped up by another business at that address resulting in lost sales for their client.

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    Matt Coen photo
    Matt Coen

    Quality of summit is comparable to a course at Harvard Business School according to Local Media Association Board Chairman Jon Rust

    A bonus pre-conference executive-level summit on daily deals has been added – at no additional cost – to the agenda for the Key Executives Mega-Conference next month in San Antonio.

    This two-hour session will be led by Matt Coen, president of Second Street Media Solutions. It is scheduled for Sunday, Feb. 26, from 3:30 - 5:30 p.m. Please note this when making your travel arrangements.

    "I attended a two hour deals boot camp led by Matt Coen at Second Street Media last year that proved to be one of the best conference sessions of the year for me. I felt like I was back at Harvard Business School – it was that compelling. More importantly, I was able to go back and implement changes to our deals program that will set us up for strong growth in 2012. This is a high level summit – ideal for senior executives. I highly recommend it to my colleagues in the industry."
    ~ Jon K. Rust, co-president of Rust Communications and publisher of the Southeast Missourian

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    Register now for Industry Mega Conference February 27-29 San Antonio, Texas

    Last year SNA, Inland Press Association and SNPA joined forces to produce one large mega conference for its members.  It was indeed “mega” – nearly 500 attendees descended on the Vinoy in St. Petersburg, Florida for a three day event.

    The three associations have once again teamed up to bring you “Transformation Through Innovation” that will take place February 27-29 in San Antonio, Texas.

    "We are pleased to once again partner with Inland and SNPA to produce the industry's must-attend event for local media executives", said Nancy Lane, president of Local Media Association (formerly SNA), "This year's program is even stronger with a focus on new revenue streams and new business models all supported by successful case studies and best practices. As a bonus, the trade show will feature over 40 of the industry's premier vendors that will showcase new and proven revenue producing tools and services."

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    Listening to the Mike Blinder webinar on how they created $600,000 in 60 days with GateHouse Media you realize that in a nano-second world that spending time researching and preparing for client meetings is more important than ever.

    It does take a village when you put together a sales plan for a company as large as GateHouse: 79 dailies; more than 250 weeklies and 95 shoppers plus more than 400 websites. Blinder had a host of GateHouse executives from around the company (and the country) on the webinar to discuss how they’ve been successful with a focused sales approach.

    According to Brad Harmon, Corporate VP of Sales & Marketing digital goals for 2012 will be double this year’s percentages of 25-25%. Harmon says “that is very achievable.”

    In order to reach these goals it’s important that three things happen according to Harmon: we simplify, standardize and automate. Infrastructure is key. Currently they have 10 digital specialists in the New England area and plan to add many more where there are regional opportunities.

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    Membership voted 5:1 to support name change

    After forty years, Suburban Newspapers of America is changing its name. Local Media Association was recommended by a committee (including the SNA board of directors and the SNA marketing committee) that represented nearly 30 member companies. It was an intense five month process that included an enormous amount of healthy debate. The membership received ballots on December 1 and when the voting ended today, the motion had carried. In fact, SNA members supported the name change by a ratio of 5:1.

    “It’s simple, self-explanatory, direct,” said Jon K. Rust, Co-President of Rust Communications and Chairman of the Board for SNA. “It puts ‘local’ first – just like we do as media organizations – and it shares that we’re not just newspapers anymore, but much more. It also says that we are united as an association, working together to become better.”

    In 1971, SNA was formed when a group of entrepreneurial, family-owned newspaper publishers merged three other associations into this new one. The association has always carried the entrepreneurial spirit of those founding fathers with innovative and cutting-edge programs and research. In that vein, a new tag line has also been developed - “Innovate. Educate. Inspire.”

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    All SNA delegates (designated voting member for each company) received a ballot on December 1 to vote on a proposed name change for the organization. The SNA board of directors is recommending Local Media Association as the new name.

    Many voices were involved in proposing this new name. In addition to the 14 companies represented by senior level executives on the SNA board of directors, another 12 companies were represented on the marketing committee. These companies include: GateHouse Media, Sun-Times Media Group, Journal Register Company/Digital First Media, New York Times Regional Group, Swift Communications, Metroland Media Group, Deseret Digital Media, Borrell Associates, Rust Communications, Wick Communications, ASP Westward, ThisWeek Community Newspapers, American Community Newspapers, Richner Communications, The World Company, Arizona Daily Star, NGM Partners, Holden Landmark Corporation, CrossRoadsNews, The Elkhart Truth, Dow Jones Local Media Group and USA Weekend.

    There are many reasons for the proposed name change as you might imagine. The current name confuses people and is not reflective of the entire membership. It also does not account for the digital side of our businesses. As for the new name, "...it's simple, self-explanatory, direct", said Jon Rust, Chairman of the SNA Board of Directors, "It is also powerful: It puts 'local' first - just like we do as media organizations - and it shares that we're not just newspapers anymore but much more." The board has also put forth a new tagline: "Innovate. Educate. Inspire." These words truly reflect the spirit of SNA that will continue under the new name.

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    Matt Coen, CEO of Second Street Media, led a terrific two-hour boot camp in advance of the Daily Deals Summit that took place in Tampa in November.

    Here are the top headlines from the boot camp:

    Understanding “Deal Appeal”

    Matt Coen photo
    Matt Coen
    Deal Appeal Checklist:
    • Brand recognition
    • Location(s) – multiple locations work best
    • Audience appeal
    • Deal uniqueness (deals no one else has)
    • Pricing and discounts
    • Restrictions
    • Multiple quantities
    • Expiration date
    • Deal category (certain categories just work better than others)
    • Seasonality

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    The Southern Newspaper Publishers Association’s Annual Convention took place in Williamsburg, Virginia, last week. Below are a few highlights and top quotes of the conference:

    “I can’t compete with your brand.”
    From Warren Webster, President of Patch, when asked how newspapers can compete with Patch.

    Patch is in 863 neighborhoods covered by 1,000 journalists. In 2010, they were ranked the 10th largest local property by comScore in terms of monthly unique visitors – in 2011 they moved up to number five. They are investing in infrastructure. In terms of town penetration, 50 percent of a town population visits Patch within 7 months of site launch and over 80 percent of the population will visit monthly after one year. Currently, 90 percent of their advertising is local and 10 percent is national. They want to be the “concierge” of the web.

    When asked about revenue needed by Patch, Webster noted the example that they would need $10-$12,000 of revenue per month in a 26,000 populated market.

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    The SNA Foundation has launched a new program that is designed to put innovation on the fast track. The Local Media Innovation Alliance is a membership-based program that will provide monthly research papers and related webinars that will focus on the following:

    • New and sustainable business models in the digital age
    • Monetizing the digital side of the business
    • New content strategies
    • Promising new trends in all areas of multi-media publishing
    • Mobile, tablets, and more

    The reports will focus on promising trends/opportunities from local media companies of all kinds including newspapers, pure plays, radio, TV, directories, and more. Membership is open to all local media outlets.

    Full Article | Comments (18)

    If you were able to attend the SNA Fall Conference in Phoenix, you noticed a distinct thread of innovation that was visibly woven into all of the sessions…the “MediaMorphosis” theme resonated throughout the conference. From the keynote of a “World Class Sales Force” to digital agency initiatives and case studies to remarkable new products such as Metroland Media’s ShopTalk, you walked away with the distinct feeling that something exciting is happening: Newspapers have immersed themselves in new media. If you didn’t have the chance to attend, you will find coverage of the SNA conference in the upcoming issue of Suburban Publisher as well as an upcoming “Lessons Learned” webinar from the conference.

    To learn more about the conference, click here to visit the SNA Conference page on NetNewsCheck.

    NetNewsCheck logoNetNewsCheck is the media partner for the SNA Fall Publishers’ and Ad Directors’ Conference.

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    Fall Conference Innovation Mission Session photo
    Innovation Mission participants, from left, Steven McHaney, Co-Publisher of the Victoria Advocate; Suzanne Schlicht, Chief Operating Officer of the World Company; Jon Rust, Co-President of Rust Communications; Bob Brown, Chief Operating Officer of Swift Communications; Brandon Erlacher, Publisher of the Elkhart (Indiana) Truth; and Nancy Lane, President of SNA, presented to Fall Conference attendees.

    Separate digital staffs or integrated staffs? How about this answer: yes and yes. It became clear during the Innovation session at the SNA Fall Conference in Phoenix last week that selling digital isn’t black and white. While many companies feel they need a separate digital staff, they haven’t given up on current reps selling digital programs. There are a number of products and services that media companies can offer well beyond what is on their horizon. It takes someone from the outside with the digital experience to lead the companies into areas they haven’t even imagined. With that said, there are also a number of core products and services that existing sales teams can leverage based on long-standing advertiser relationships.

    To learn more about this and other takeaways including from this session, click here to read "’Innovation Mission’ Yields Digital Must-Dos," by Michael Depp, Editor of NetNewsCheck.

    NetNewsCheck logoNetNewsCheck is the media partner for the SNA Fall Publishers’ and Ad Directors’ Conference.

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    SNA is pleased to announce two upcoming conferences scheduled for the second week of November in Tampa. The first is a brand new one-day Local Media Daily Deals Summit, created by SNA in response to tremendous interest and explosive growth in daily deals programs. All local print and broadcast media companies are invited to attend. The second three-day program is a newly developed Classified Multimedia Conference designed to take community classified departments to the next level. This program is targeted at advertising directors and classified managers who are looking to expand their marketing footprint through new technology and a targeted sales approach. Although held at the same time in the same hotel, these two events are distinctly different from one another and feature two very different and unique programs.

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    With preconference bonus session on November 9th

    Suburban Newspapers of America is pleased to announce the creation of a brand new conference dedicated to the topic of daily deals. The “Local Media Daily Deals Summit” has been created by SNA in response to tremendous interest in the deals programs. “In the last year the deals programs have just exploded,” said Nancy Lane, President of SNA. “We thought it was important to showcase success stories during a one day summit to help all members grow this segment of the business. We have some outstanding case studies to share from markets and companies of all sizes. This is a must-attend event for any member that is serious about daily deals."

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    Silent Auction to be held at the SNA Fall Conference in Phoenix!

    Today more than ever, newspaper companies need help as they transition to multimedia companies. The SNA Foundation (SNAF) continues to develop new learning initiatives, research and reports specific to digital transformation. That work cannot continue without the generous support from our donors. Recent Foundation sponsored programs include multimedia e-learning courses, a specialized reporting symposium and a North American Innovation Mission visiting progressive media companies with followup best practices report and learning webinars (click here to learn more about the work of the SNAF).

    This is where you come in...

    Everyone has items that are new or in almost-new condition that they aren't using. Maybe it's tickets to a major sporting event, a gift card that's not up your alley or a bottle of wine from a local vineyard. These are the types of items that the SNAF needs for our silent auction to be held during the SNA Fall Publishers' and Advertising Directors' Conference in Phoenix in September. All contributions are tax deductible.

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    SNA's Lifetime Achievement Award to Be Presented in Phoenix This Fall

    William Brehm Sr. photo
    William Brehm, Sr.

    William (Bill) Brehm, Sr., has been named this years Dean Lesher Award recipient. Brehm, Sr., has been active in the publishing industry for more than 60 years and at one time served on the SNA Board of Directors. In 1984, Brehm, Sr., presented the Dean Lesher award to Ralph Markham of the Antelope Valley Newspapers (California). Twenty seven years later, he will now be presented with this distinguished honor.

    Brehm, Sr., began his career at the Industrial Post in Bell, California (near Los Angeles), in 1946 and became president several years later. He also was president of the company's first newspaper (The Daily Democrat in Fort Madison, Iowa). The newspaper is still under the same ownership 90 years later as part of Brehm Communications, Inc. Today Brehm operates more than 60 daily, weekly and semiweekly newspapers, shoppers and niche publications located in the states of California, Arizona, Nevada, Utah, Iowa, Illinois and Indiana.

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    Save the Date!
    November 9-11, 2011

    SNA is pleased to announce a newly re-tooled Classified Conference focused specifically on innovative solutions for Classified Departments. The SNA Classified Multimedia Conference will take place at the DoubleTree by Hilton hotel in sunny Tampa, Florida, this November 9-11. Rooms are a low $99/night!

    After important and honest feedback from our 2011 conference committee, SNA decided it was time to take this conference up a notch. These won’t be the same-old classified sessions. "This conference will address higher level issues and will focus on the hottest opportunities for classified categories of business," said Nancy Lane, SNA President. "Technology is allowing us to sell differently in print, online, mobile and more; we'll focus on the areas with the greatest revenue potential by showcasing promising trends and new success stories."

    Full Article | Comments (49)

    Includes Best Buy, Staples, Centro, Most Major Agencies and More; Novus Just Added This Week

    SNA is pleased to announce more than 15 confirmed advertiser/agency representatives to engage in one-on-one conversations with SNA attendees in Phoenix this September. SNA provides a unique attendee experience with these personal meetings that are pre-arranged by SNA staff. “It’s really a productive day,” says Tanya Henderson, Advertising and Membership Relations Director with SNA. “Picture more than 15 media buyers each meeting every 20 minutes with a different newspaper company with just a few breaks all day long. It allows attendees to meet with a number of advertisers they may not otherwise have the chance to visit, and it allows the advertisers to see everyone at one venue.”

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    ‘In community journalism, there is no place to hide, and if you want to hide, then you have no business in this business anyway.’

    By Al Cross, director, Institute for Rural Journalism and Community Issues; associate professor, School of Journalism and Telecommunications, University of Kentucky

     Crittenden Press photo
    Chris Evans, editor and publisher of The Crittenden Press in rural Kentucky, explains his mission: “We are here to serve the people.”
    Photo by Allison Mick-Evans.

    Lyndon Johnson once observed that "the country weekly acts as a form of social cement in holding the community together." But this son of rural Texas, who rose to be president of the United States, also declared, "The fact that a man is a newspaper reporter is evidence of some flaw of character."

    Johnson was a man of some contradiction. These two views, each perhaps held with equal fervor, reflect the constant conundrum that good community journalists confront between responsibilities as a professional and the need to have friends and friendly acquaintances, as part of a community. Holding local leaders and institutions accountable while playing an engaged civic role of building and strengthening the community inevitably leads to conflict.

    Full Article | Comments (16)

    The SNA Foundation recently held a webinar for the participants of the McCormick's Specialized Reporting Institute symposium. As a follow-up to symposium, Jane Stevens, Director of Media Strategies with the Lawrence Journal-World shared their year-old community health niche site, wellcommons.com, with the group.

    Full Article | Comments (19)

    Online Benchmarking Report photo

    A canyon has formed between newspapers companies that are gaining share in the digital space and those losing it. The following findings are based on those publications that have shown significant growth in their digital operation:

    • Most are selling “solutions” to advertisers, not just banners on their own websites. These include deal-of-the-day programs, email advertising opportunities, targeted banners, contests, ads delivered through networks to other sites such as Yahoo, Facebook or Google, mobile text offerings, etc.
    • They have a sales force dedicated exclusively to selling online products. Even the smallest newspapers have at least one online-only salesperson. Some have more than two dozen.
    • They have clear and aggressive revenue goals – often not incremental.
    • Their local interactive manager typically reports directly to the publisher, not to the editor or sales manager.
    • They view the web as a platform to go beyond what’s in the printed newspaper and give a greater voice to the community, extend deadlines and compete with other media. The web has allowed suburban and community newspapers to compete more heavily with metro newspapers, radio and television when it comes to in-depth coverage.

    These conclusions represent just some of the findings detailed in the recently released Local Online Media Benchmarking Revenue Survey, prepared by Borrell Associates for SNA members.

    Full Article | Comments (17)

    SNA’s Interactive Media Alliance (IMA) held a webinar in April on paywalls and metered approaches. Three of our speakers, Roger Coover, President and Publisher, The Stockton Record; Andy Waters, VP, Interactive, Columbia Daily Tribune; and Ernie Schreiber, Director of Content Development, Lancaster Newspapers, Inc., answered a number of questions during the webinar. Below are some we wanted to share. Note that each company has different metered plans and level of experience. For example, Stockton has had a paywall since last year; Columbia’s paywall is fairly new and Lancaster Newspapers is currently only charging for obits outside of their market.

    Full Article | Comments (20)

    Local Newspaper Deals Site Generates Aid for Joplin Tornado Relief

    Deals platforms that generate dollars at lighting-speed can now add fundraising and relief efforts to their list of successful programs. ShoptheLake.com, a GateHouse newspaper website, has raised more than $3,000 by using the power of social networking to get the word out on this very important cause. The vendor working with the newspaper also donated their fee to the relief effort.

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    Employees of the Joplin Globe, a long-time SNA member and part of the Cnhi family, need our help. The homes of 26 of the 117 employees were heavily damaged or destroyed by the recent tornado that devastated the town. SNA is partnering with the Missouri Press Association to raise money for a special disaster relief fund for the affected newspaper employees and their families. The fund will also be used to help any other newspaper employees' that were affected by this disaster (in addition to the Joplin Globe).

    Please consider a donation of any amount. Click here to make your donation online (or you can mail a check to Missouri Press Foundation, 802 Locust Street, Columbia, MO 65201). All donations are tax-deductible. Thanks for your support.

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    The last session of the SNA/Blinder Conference on Thursday was all about retooling the sales department. Here are the highlights:

    From Chris Edwards, VP of Sales, Cedar Rapids Gazette/TV-9:

    Chris Edwards photo
    Chris Edwards, VP of Sales at Cedar Rapids Gazette/TV-9, presenting at the SNA/The Blinder Group Revenue Leadership Summit.
    • Created new business development group focusing only on non-customers. Once businesses are sold, they are handed off to another group. They work as a “hit squad” for new projects.
    • After doing some research, they found that 15% of the community uses them, but 85% do not, leaving a huge pot of potential and justifying the need for a new specialized group.
    • They hire by personality profile – if you don’t pass, you don’t get the interview. If you do pass, you are given a sales aptitude test. In all, it’s a four-interview process. Media experience is not required.

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    From Nancy Lane, President, SNA


    Revenue Summit Attendees photo
    Attendees at the SNA/The Blinder Group Revenue Summit listening intently at the Top Ten Revenue Ideas session.

    The SNA/Blinder Revenue Summit rocks. Here are a few of my favorite take-aways:

    From Top Ten Revenue Ideas session:

    Daily Deals (Ashley Pyle, Product Rollout Manager, Lee Enterprises, and Tim Corcoran, Regional Director of Advertising, Toronto Community News): Impulse buys/vanity offers working very well; both have had deals that were over six figures; at Metroland they have had huge success with car washes (recent deal has 1,200 vouchers) and men's shirts.

    Microsites and Facebook facelifts for local advertisers (Doug Dixon, Sales Manager, ThisWeek Community Newspapers): These are sold as part of larger package. For an example on Facebook, check out Bel-Lago Waterfront Bistro. Microsite examples: www.motoristallstars.com and www.wowwhatamovie.com.

    Full Article | Comments (60)

    By Deb Shaw, For the SNA Foundation


    UGC Your News photo
    UGC is an excellent source of names and faces for your paper.

    User Generated Content has gotten a lot of ink lately. High profile forays, like Deseret Media’s Clark Gilbert strategic development of Deseret Connect and the Community Media Lab program within the now digital-first Journal Register Company, are testament to the growing importance of these programs to the modern business model.

    In this era of tight resources and shrinking staffs, what editor wouldn’t like a source of robust content that doesn’t cost anything and is pliable enough to be published in multiple ways – online, in print, even as full feature or hard news stories? The folks at GateHouse Media have developed a ‘callout’ approach that is yielding healthy results such as these and shared the details in a recent SNA Foundation-sponsored webinar.

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    SNA President Nancy Lane has been providing daily reports from the road while she traveled with the Innovation Mission. Eighteen community media executives took part in this week-long study, visiting some of the most innovative media houses in North America. The group focused on new business models and emerging content strategies.

    Innovation Mission:
    Attendee Feedback/Key Take-Aways

    Innovation Mission Attendees at Baseball Game photo
    Innovation Mission attendees watched the Toronto Blue Jays take on the Detroit Tigers at the Toronto Sky Dome on Friday.

    At 4 PM on Friday afternoon, Innovation Mission attendees debriefed in a conference room at Torstar's offices, hosted by Metroland, on the key take-aways of the past six days. There was no shortage of enthusiasm despite the exhausting travel schedule that took the group to four states and two countries in a short, compact period of time.

    Emotions ranged from aha moments to outright confusion on next steps. Everyone walked away with new ideas and new friends. Many are going to make dramatic changes upon their return as a result of this experience.

    Full Article | Comments (97)

    SNA President Nancy Lane will provide daily reports from the road while traveling with the Innovation Mission. Eighteen community media executives are taking part in this week-long study to visit with some of the most innovative media houses in North America. The group is focusing on new business models and emerging content strategies.

    Friday Afternoon Report from Metroland Media – Mashing Up Mobile and Group Deals with UofCheap.com

    Brandon Erlacher and Suzanne Schlicht photo
    Innovation Mission attendees Brandon Erlacher, Publisher of The Elkhart Truth, and Suzanne Schlicht, COO of The World Company, enjoying some UofCheap.com swag.

    With a specific target of college/university students, UofCheap.com takes the student discount card concept to the medium of choice for most young people – the smart phone.

    UofCheap.com has gone hyper-local and is targeting all of the colleges and universities in the province of Ontario. The site includes a mix of daily and stagnant deals (stagnant deals are anytime deals – not necessarily deeply discounted). On the daily deal side, users get email alerts each day when the new deal is posted.

    Full Article | Comments (82)

    SNA President Nancy Lane will provide daily reports from the road while traveling with the Innovation Mission. Eighteen community media executives are taking part in this week-long study to visit with some of the most innovative media houses in North America. The group is focusing on new business models and emerging content strategies.

    Friday Morning Report: Selling Video Advertising Packages

    Meriel Bradley photo
    Meriel Bradley, Executive Producer, The Digital Video Group, Metroland Media.

    “Every client in your market should have a video.” These words of wisdom came from Meriel Bradley, Executive Producer, The Digital Video Group, Metroland Media, during one of the major aha moments of the entire Innovation Mission.

    According to Bradley, “90% of consumers say that watching a video influences their buying decisions,” and “67% of Canada’s population viewed more than 5.6 billion videos online last year.”

    Bradley came to Metroland with a background in TV and video and wowed attendees with a new product that she created called “ShopTalk.”

    ShopTalk combines print, video, blogs and QR codes into a packaged buy. QR codes act as a bridge between print and digital experiences and “put product right in the palms of your customers' hands.” The typical ShopTalk package includes a 60 second video; 12 print ads (one per month); and 12 professionally written blogs (one per month).

    Full Article | Comments (61)

    SNA President Nancy Lane will provide daily reports from the road while traveling with the Innovation Mission. Eighteen community media executives are taking part in this week-long study to visit with some of the most innovative media houses in North America. The group is focusing on new business models and emerging content strategies.

    Thursday Morning Report:
    Question of the Day – 'What if We...'

    Linda Grist Cunningham photo
    Linda Grist Cunningham,
    Executive Editor,
    Rockford Register Star

    Prepared by Al Cupo, Vice President, Operations, Suburban Newspapers of America

    Linda Grist Cunningham, Executive Editor at the Rockford Register Star in Illinois, joined the SNA Foundation's Innovation Mission in Boston by way of Skype. Linda is one of those people who are always asking the types of questions that lead to innovative solutions. More times than not, these questions start with the words 'what if we...' These three simple words have been asked over and over again as Linda and her team continue what she refers to as their 'Cyber-Fiber Integration.'

    Linda provided several examples of this innovative thinking during her one-hour presentation to Mission participants. As early as 1998, she was experimenting with different types of front page formats for their web site. Today, the Register Star's web site, www.rrstar.com, features 15 to 20 top stories with a brief description of each. The reader can then make the decision to dive deeper into each article. Their web site is both clean and easy to navigate and readers have been very receptive to this format.

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    SNA President Nancy Lane will provide daily reports from the road while traveling with the Innovation Mission. Eighteen community media executives are taking part in this week-long study to visit with some of the most innovative media houses in North America. The group is focusing on new business models and emerging content strategies.

    Wednesday Afternoon Report: JRC's Open Community Newsroom – The "Torrington State of Mind"

    Matt DeRienzo photo
    Matt DeRienzo, Publisher of The Register Citizen, in the Newsroom Café.

    Open and transparent best describes Journal Register Company's Open Community Newsroom in downtown Torrington, CT. And what they have created in this former sewing machine factory is simply remarkable and serves as a model for the entire industry.

    The Register Citizen (daily with circulation of about 7,000) has redefined the meaning of community contributions. The renovated building includes meeting rooms, a café, access to archives, a copy machine (free of charge to the public), and perhaps most importantly, community input in the news-making process.

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    SNA President Nancy Lane will provide daily reports from the road while traveling with the Innovation Mission. Eighteen community media executives are taking part in this week-long study to visit with some of the most innovative media houses in North America. The group is focusing on new business models and emerging content strategies.

    Wednesday Morning Report: Digital First Revenue Strategies

    Adam Burnham photo
    Adam Burnham, Vice President of Local Sales for Journal Register Company, presents to attendees at the Innovation Mission.

    The nearly three hour bus ride was worth it for Innovation Mission attendees to see the nation's first open community newsroom in Torrington, Connecticut.

    The group met with Journal Register Company (JRC) executives for five hours to learn about the open newsroom (to be covered in a related article to be released this afternoon) and revenue success stories in this digital-first company.

    Adam Burnham, Vice President of Local Sales for Journal Register Company, shared company strategies, success stories and lessons learned.

    Full Article | Comments (74)

    SNA President Nancy Lane will provide daily reports from the road while traveling with the Innovation Mission. Eighteen community media executives are taking part in this week-long study to visit with some of the most innovative media houses in North America. The group is focusing on new business models and emerging content strategies.

    Tuesday Report - Creating the Digital Agency, Pay Walls, ROI-based Advertising and More

    The digital agency initiative has become a core pillar of the Dow Jones Local Media Group. Senior Vice President of Digital Media and Product Management Kurt Lozier met with Innovation Mission attendees in Boston over dinner on Tuesday night.

    Kurt Lozier and Terry Kukle photo
    Kurt Lozier, Senior Vice President of Digital Media and Product Management at Dow Jones Local Media Group, talks with Innovation Mission participant Terry Kukle.

    The agency approach was developed after using Borrell Compass reports as well as other research to determine that 67% of local digital dollars are going to promotions and infrastructure (development of web site, social media, pay-per-click, etc.) They want to go after those dollars; they want to be the trusted consultant.

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    SNA President Nancy Lane will provide daily reports from the road while traveling with the Innovation Mission. Eighteen community media executives are taking part in this week-long study to visit with some of the most innovative media houses in North America. The group is focusing on new business models and emerging content strategies.

    Monday Afternoon Report - Content Strategies

    Clark Gilbert photo
    Clark Gilbert, President
    & CEO, Deseret News
    Publishing Company and
    Deseret Digital Media

    "Strategy is never more than 49% of the solution; you must have great people" - Clark Gilbert, President & CEO, Deseret News Publishing Company and Deseret Digital Media.

    One thing was clearly evident, the greatest disruptor in our industry has assembled an unbelievable team to execute. All come from a digital background (0 years of collective newspaper experience).

    The innovation mission attendees met with more than 14 of the top managers at Deseret Digital. The afternoon focused on content strategies and after a tour of the amazing converged newsroom, executives shared some of those strategies.

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    SNA President Nancy Lane will provide daily reports from the road while traveling with the Innovation Mission. Eighteen community media executives are taking part in this week-long study to visit with some of the most innovative media houses in North America. The group is focusing on new business models and emerging content strategies.

    Monday Morning Report - Commerce Strategies/New Business Models

    Innovation Mission, Monday photo
    Will digital revenue account for 25% of your revenue and 50% of your profit margin by the end of 2011? It should according to Clark Gilbert, CEO of Deseret News and Deseret Digital Media.

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    SNA President Nancy Lane will provide daily reports from the road while traveling with the Innovation Mission. Eighteen community media executives are taking part in this week-long study to visit with some of the most innovative media houses in North America. The group is focusing on new business models and emerging content strategies.

    Rick Blair photo
    Rick Blair, CEO,
    Examiner.com

    Sunday Night Report: Rick Blair, CEO, Examiner.com

    "Probably the largest network that no one has ever heard of!" It is large indeed with 22 million monthly unique visitors.Blair focused on their amazing content strategy:

    • 70,000 "examiners" defined as passionate, credible, local insiders
    • 48% of applicants are accepted
    • Goal when choosing examiners - thought leadership/high standards/quality
    • Vast majority have some writing experience
    • They process 2,000 applications per week

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    SNA has teamed up with NewspaperToolbox to provide an online entry platform for the 2011 Advertising & Promotions Contest. This new online contest entry system is designed to make the process of entering contests quicker, easier and less costly than the previous method of mailing ‘hard-copy’ material.

    SNA chose to partner with NewspaperToolbox because of their proven ability to collect and share revenue-generating ideas with publishers throughout North America. With just a click of a button, you can access thousands of ready-to-sell ideas, reader contests, concept pages, themed editorial features and articles, special supplements, games, horoscopes, recipes and so much more. The ideas and concepts they present are easy-to-sell and are adaptable to any market, large or small.

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    By Deb Shaw, For the SNA Foundation
    Another free e-learning course has just been released by the Suburban Newspapers of America Foundation in conjunction with the Poynter Institute’s NewsUniversity. The e-course, The Community Journalism Series, has two parts – one intended for newsroom leaders to help them develop and manage a UGC program, and one intended for amateur contributors to teach them the fundamentals of contributing to the local media house.

    Citizen journalism, user-generated content, pro-amateur journalism, crowd sourcing, blogging, conversational media, participatory journalism, consumer-created content – whatever you call it, using readers, viewers or listeners as a source for content – whether informally via comments or in fully structured relationships – is happening in all forms of media.

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    JRC’s outreach to expand local voices is poised to triple by year’s end

    By Deb Shaw, For the SNA Foundation


    Open Newsroom
    When Jon Cooper and Matt DeRienzo took center stage at a recent SNA Foundation-sponsored webinar to talk about the new open newsroom environment at The Register Citizen in Torrington, Conn., attendees got a bonus of hearing much more about a variety of initiatives having to do with engaging audience. Cooper, V.P. of Content for Journal Register Company, and DeRienzo, Publisher in Torrington, freely shared many elements of the evolving culture shift within their newsrooms and their communities at large including details of how they now routinely invite the general public to participate in ways unimaginable just a few short years ago.

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    Additions to 10 Best Ideas Session at Leadership Summit


    SNA is proud to announce an expanded two-hour revenue session at the upcoming SNA/Blinder Group conference in Chicago May 18-20. SNA and The Blinder Group, after attending dozens of conferences last year and working personally with hundreds of media companies, have collected their best ideas for revenue growth over the past year and narrowed them down to the TOP TEN. Criteria included: easy to implement; substantial revenue potential (relative to print and digital standards) and a new twist or angle (or brand new idea altogether). Also, to make the final list a representative from the chosen company had to be available to present and willing to share important information including sales and marketing materials. Finally, the top ten had to include a mix of print, online & mobile.

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    McCormick Foundation grant covers costs for two days of in-depth training co-hosted by Suburban Newspapers of America Foundation and Associated Press Managing Editors

    NEWS RELEASE
    Traverse City, MI

    Twenty community journalists from across the United States have been selected to attend a two-day symposium to learn how to report local stories and develop multimedia reporting projects on the impacts of the economic crisis on American families.

    The symposium, funded by a grant from The McCormick Foundation and co-hosted by Suburban Newspapers of America (SNA) Foundation and the Association Press Managing Editors (APME), is part of McCormick's Specialized Reporting Institutes program. The training takes place April 5 and 6 in Chicago at the Chicago Sun-Times.

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    by Deborah Shaw for the SNA Foundation


    If what they’re doing in Torrington, Conn. is any indication, it’s definitely time to re-envision what it means to engage your audience.

    Newsroom Cafe
    In a move that actually saved money for the company, Torrington recently relocated to a new facility and in the process created an ‘open community newsroom’ environment. One change is a Newsroom Café, in close proximity to the newsroom staff, which offers free Wi-Fi for the general public.
    Named "One of 10 That Do It Right" by Editor & Publisher for their open community newsroom, The Register-Citizen, a small market 8,000 circulation daily that’s owned by Journal Register Company, now routinely invites the public to attend, in person or via a live web stream, their daily news budget meeting; they welcome members of the community to come in and blog away on modern work stations; they offer free Wi-Fi in a cozy environment that’s closely situated to reporters and editors; they offer open access to more than 130 years of newspaper archives; they freely extend hospitality in the form of community rooms for area groups to host their own meetings; and there’s a coffee shop, the ‘newsroom café’, in which patrons can enjoy a cup of coffee and a locally baked pastry while tapping free Wi-Fi and perhaps interacting with members of the newspaper’s staff.

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    Suburban Newspapers of America, in partnership with Borrell Associates and Kevin McCrudden of MotivateAmerica, is pleased to announce the development of a new media sales certification program scheduled to launch in early Summer 2011. In a recent SNA member questionnaire, we learned there was an overwhelming need for ongoing training to meet the demands of the current media environment. This certification program has been developed to specifically address those needs, as well as, the many ongoing requests we receive for training.

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    IMPACT OF THE ECONOMIC CRISIS ON AMERICAN FAMILIES:
    Applications are now being taken

    All costs covered to attend this specialized two-day symposium in Chicago

    The SNA Foundation and the Associated Press Managing Editors have been awarded a grant by The McCormick Foundation to conduct a specialized two-day reporting workshop. The symposium, part of McCormick's Specialized Reporting Institutes program, will educate community journalists on how to uncover local stories on the impacts of the current economic crisis on the American family.

    The symposium will take a deep dive into this subject and will feature top speakers from the academic world, as well as journalists who cover highly-specialized aspects of this topic. The ultimate goal is to provide scholarship recipients with a host of tools and information to better cover the topic at a local level in their communities. Follow-up webinars with symposium attendees will also be part of this comprehensive learning experience.

    Scholarship applications are due by February 25; click here to access the application form and information. The symposium takes place April 5 - 6 in Chicago (air, hotel and meals are included). Special thanks to the Sun-Times Media Group for hosting this event.

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    SNA/APME

    SNA & APME are proud to partner on a two-part webinar series that explores recent news events and how social media played a part in the reporting and news dissemination process.

    SNA has partnered with APME to bring you a two-part webinar series that explores breaking news events and how social media played a part in the reporting and news dissemination process. Our first webinar (scheduled next week on 2/16 at 11:00 AM ET) investigates the lessons learned from the recent Tucson Shootings and asks the question, “Are you really prepared to handle a major news story in your town?” Our second webinar in the series (scheduled for 3/2 at 11:00 AM ET) will look at the recent story surrounding the “Man with the Golden Voice” and explore what lessons the Columbus Dispatch has learned from this explosive news event. Full details.

    COST: SNA & APME Members: Only $29 each or $49 for both webinars. Non-members: $49 per webinar.
    Registration Form

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    By Tanya Henderson, Advertising & Membership Relations Director


    You’ll see attached to this article an advertisement that features the SNA leadership staff. You’ll also see it in upcoming editions of Suburban Publisher. This is a new campaign that I created after realizing that we offer a different proposition when it comes to association staffing today. I’ve noticed some organizations are leaning back in this area when it comes to industry experience. Leadership may not always be industry veterans – staff may not even have any newspaper experience. It’s not uncommon these days as some associations are bringing in other types of experience – those with nonprofits and fundraising for example. There’s no right or wrong way to run an association but I do think we do have a unique story to tell.

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    Conference to Cover Print, Online, Mobile & More -- May 18-20, Chicago


    NEWS RELEASE
    Traverse City, MI.
    Suburban Newspapers of America is once again partnering with The Blinder Group, this time to produce a world-class revenue summit this May in Chicago. This three day event is all about the money, and that is absolutely reflected in the program.

    “Mike Blinder has literally traveled the world over the past few years conducting sales blitzes and providing training to media companies of all sizes,” said Nancy Lane, President, SNA. “He is in a position to identify the best and most innovative revenue-producing ideas and bring the people behind these ideas to an event such as this one. We couldn’t be more excited to team up with Mike for what is no doubt going to be one of our best events of the year.”

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