Sunday, April 20, 2014
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Entries for the 'Conferences' Category

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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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Join us live from the Revenue Summit in Chicago as we present three webinars live from the stage.
  • Inside Sales: The Million Dollar Baby by Todd Handy
  • Ten Revenue Ideas From Europe by Andre Eckert
  • Monetizing Social Media by Shannon Kinney

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No lines, no dress codes! Sign up now for the Virtual Ad Conference in July. Sales training and education over three days from the comfort of your office.

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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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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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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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Local SMB Mobile Mash-up
2013 Preview

Al Cupo, Vice President, Local Media Association

In this session, Borrell Associates’ Larry Shaw, VP of research and Greg Harmon, senior research analyst, offered a glimpse of the latest SMB survey data that indicates a major increase in mobile marketing interest. Borrell Associates worked with local media companies throughout the U.S. to deliver this survey for their in-market SMB’s. The results were aggregated and analyzed for this research report that was presented. 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


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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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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
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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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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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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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...

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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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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.

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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, or Deanna Lewis, Sales and Marketing Director, (207) 384-5022,

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    By Nancy Lane

    Wow – what a conference; one of our best ever for sure! Below represents my top takeaways, ideas and thoughts – in no particular order:

    Nancy Lane photo

    ·         From Jason Taylor’s event marketing keynote: “Create something out of nothing.” He is closing in on $3 million/year by doing this. New event ideas that require little risk included: city-wide garage sale with a brand & logo; sell your own After Hours event instead of the Chamber of Commerce; broadcast live medical surgeries with sponsorships from the hospital; movie premiers/partner with local theatre & sell sponsorship.

    ·         From Centro’s Shawn Riegsecker - 2017 media landscape presentation: “What if digital advertising as it’s currently practiced, is actually the last stage of the old cycle rather than the beginning of the new cycle?”  Shawn also told the audience that 24/7 video news channels represent a huge opportunity for local media companies.

    ·         Email marketing session – from Rich Whippen/WSPN: “Best time to send an email campaign is Tuesday morning.” WSPN has realized $350,000 in incremental revenue from email marketing. Check out to learn more including opportunities to partner with them.

    ·         Digital agency session – from Peter Newton/GateHouse Media & Propel Marketing: “33% of consumer searches are now done on mobile devices; that will increase to 50% next year yet most SMB’s don’t have a mobile-enabled web site.” This is a huge opportunity for digital agencies; Propel now builds these in-house for their clients. Propel is also interested in partnering with other local media companies.

    ·         From the great idea session – Restaurant Weeks. Both Shore Publishing and Gold Country Media reported good success with this new event that brought in incremental revenue from the restaurant category. Sponsorships were sold to suppliers (produce companies and beer distributors are two good examples). Working with the chamber or economic development council is also a good idea for this type of event. Both conducted these in smaller towns that did not have a restaurant week promotion.

    ·         From Gordon Borrell:  “100% of the top digital revenue performers employ digital-only sales reps. Average break-even time for these reps is 18 months.”

    ·         From the Innovation Mission panel: 1. Observer Group changed their name and had employees submit mission statements and then vote on the top choice; they also conducted extensive social media training. 2. Lawrence Journal World launched free state social – a social marketing strategy and has sold $50,000 to date. 3. Shaw conducted extensive iPhone training and will also share this training with LMA members via a free webinar this fall. 4. South Bend Tribune started a digital advisory board that meets monthly and includes a car dealer, health care administrator, chamber leader, minor league baseball executive and more). They also equipped all of their reporters with iPhones and all of their sales reps with iPads.

    ·         Google Consumer Surveys session – they now have 50+ partners that are realizing a $15 RPM rate. Survey placement “above the fold” drives rates up as does frequency and metering controls.


    To learn more about any of these sessions or ideas, email me at Also check out the fall conference portion of the LMA web site to access most of the presentations (

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    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


    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
    • 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

    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 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.

    Allison Cuslock,
    Samantha Johnston,

    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 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

    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

    Full Article | Comments (32)

    Event Marketing: Keynote Has Muscle and HUGE POTENTIAL

    by Deb Shaw

    ChattanoogaTimes Free Press Publisher Jason Taylor wound up the Wednesday morning crowd with his keynote presentation on Event Marketing and boy oh boy, did he get things going with a bang. His energy was enormous and so was his lively staging of his Flex Your Muscles presentation.

    Jason Taylor photo
    Jason Taylor

    The bottom line is this: there’s plenty of money to be made in marketing events in communities large and small and, going beyond the revenue lure, the audience engagement and strengthening of newspaper brand are invaluable long term benefits.

    Why Events?

    • Revenue through sponsorship sales, ticket sales, booth sales, VIP packages, premium seating, merchandising.
    • Allows newspapers to play to their strengths – brand and market penetration. Taylor said that in his market, an advertiser would have to buy 26 commercials on American Idol to match the market penetration of an ad in his Sunday newspaper.
    • Prevent outside event companies from swooping into your market and taking these dollars. An excellent selling strategy for local newspapers: “Money spent locally stays local.”
    • Can dramatically improve foot traffic to the SMB’s who buy booths and sponsorships.
    • Grow customer base – lots of new business comes from events.
    • Engage readers – events boost relevancy and improves overall impression of newspaper among both consumers and businesses
    • Get to know clients much more intimately – when you host an event you’re spending an entire day with the businesses who are participating.
    • Strengthen underperforming audiences – have a big Hispanic demographic in your market? Host an event aimed specifically for this target.
    • Showcase high performing audiences – think Senior Expo.
    • Sell subscriptions – Taylor reports unexpectedly high sales at events.
    • Capture $$ from different buckets – many companies budget separately for event marketing. For example, McDonalds, an infrequent advertiser previously, now is the lead sponsor on Taylor’s Kidz Expo. This has led to more in paper ads such as inserts and post it front page notes.
    • Marketing your events markets you.


    Look for more on this, including links to Jason Taylor’s dynamite presentation, coming soon to this website and in October issue of Local Media Today.

    Full Article | Comments (7)

    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. Click through top story to see an example of a survey.
    • Explore this opportunity at the Consumer Survey home page at

    Full Article | Comments (14)

    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)

    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)

    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)

    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)

    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)

    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)

    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

    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)

    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)

    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)

    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

    Full Article | Comments (39)


    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)

    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)

    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."

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    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 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 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.

    Full Article | Comments (24)

    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

    Full Article | Comments (22)

    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."

    Full Article | Comments (22)

    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

    Full Article | Comments (17)

    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.

    Full Article | Comments (20)

    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.

    Full Article | Comments (29)

    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.

    Full Article | Comments (20)

    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.

    Full Article | Comments (19)

    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.

    Full Article | Comments (20)

    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.”

    Full Article | Comments (18)

    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.

    Full Article | Comments (42)

    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: and

    Full Article | Comments (60)

    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

    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 swag.

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

    Full Article | Comments (19)

    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.

    Full Article | Comments (39)

    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.

    Full Article | Comments (60)

    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.

    Full Article | Comments (19)

    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.

    Full Article | Comments (24)

    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,

    Sunday Night Report: Rick Blair, CEO,

    "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

    Full Article | Comments (21)

    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.

    Full Article | Comments (16)

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

    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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    Exceptional opportunity to visit some of the most innovative media houses in the U.S & Canada -- Reserve your spot now as space is limited

    New Business Models; Emerging Content Strategies; Digital-First Initiatives; Revenue Growth

    May 1 - 6, 2011

    The community media landscape continues to change. New opportunities and new technologies continue to emerge and the busy publisher is often feeling overwhelmed. Print still rules when it comes to revenue share and the digital landscape is becoming more and more fragmented with mobile and group deals emerging in the last six months as “must haves”. And still, a sustainable business model on the digital side has yet to materialize for most.

    The SNA Foundation has identified media houses in North America that are making bold changes in their company to adapt to the changing landscape. All of these companies are showing early success and many of them are in the top tier of their peer class when it comes to digital revenue performance. The working tour will focus on four key areas: the most promising new business models (that are sustainable) for community media companies; emerging content strategies with a special emphasis on community contributions; digital-first initiatives (both editorial and advertising) and above all, strategies to grow revenue (in print, online and mobile).

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    Suburban Newspapers of America, Inland Press and Southern Newspaper Publishers Association to Collaborate on Key Executives Conference in St. Petersburg, Florida in February

    One of North America’s leading authorities on media innovation will headline the upcoming Mega-Conference designed for key executives in the newspaper industry. Clark Gilbert, President & CEO of the Deseret News Publishing Company and Deseret Digital Media, will address conference attendees on the subject of media innovation - both in principle and in practice.

    Clark Gilbert photo
    Clark Gilbert
    Gilbert is best known in the industry as a contributor the NewspaperNext project produced by the American Press Institute. He was a founding partner of Innosight (a Boston-based consultancy that specializes in media clients targeting disruptive innovation) and professor of entrepreneurial management at Harvard Business School where he published numerous award-winning articles on innovation. He has an extensive background in digital media and also authored the book “From Resource Allocations to Strategy” in addition to numerous articles on media innovation and the growth of the internet.

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    By Tanya Henderson, Advertising & Membership Relations Director

    SNA’s Classified Alliance Real Estate Webinar given by Borrell Associates’ Pete Conti and Gordon Borrell last week hammered home the point that realtors need your help. In today’s housing market Borrell says that realtors are “jumping ship” to other firms to obtain better leads and better commission splits.

    According to Borrell’s latest research, 33.7 percent of total local real estate ad spending is going to online while 30.5 percent is going to newspaper. This category includes real estate development, mortgage loan providers, realty agents and brokers, and rental property management.  Brokers and agents provide the largest percent of ad spend.

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    By Nancy Lane, SNA President

    Roger Coover photo
    Roger Coover

    In just the last two weeks, some great new speakers and topics have been added to the Fall Conference agenda. As always, all sessions at SNA Conferences strive to provide immediate ROI. This means covering actionable items (“show me the money” as Gordon Borrell or Mike Blinder would say). While we do throw in a few big picture items, these are few and far between.

    New Sessions/Topics/Speakers Just Added Include:

    • Roger Coover, Publisher, The Record (Stockton). We recently learned that Stockton is having success with pay walls. When we heard the news, we immediately contacted Roger and he graciously agreed to come and share his story. Many SNA daily members have called us over the last six months asking for case studies on this topic; now we will have one to share.

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    Shona Mattingly
    Shona Mattingly

    By Tanya Henderson
    Advertising & Membership Relations Director, SNA

    SNA always includes panels of national advertisers and agencies during our yearly Publishers’ and Ad Directors’ conference (you’ll get to meet a bunch of them in Philly this fall). At the SNA Boot Camp in conjunction with the E&P Interactive Conference last week, it was only slightly different. The panel was all about online advertising and how to get more of it for newspaper’s web sites.

    Shona Mattingly, Publisher of Inquiries & Visits with Centro and Spencer Griffith, Assistant Media Planner/Interactive Producer with R&R Partners discussed a number of issues when working with newspapers.

    Some we’ve heard before with the print agencies — communication and standardization — although Mattingly had said she’s seen some positive movement with standardization with the introduction of the IAB ad sizes.

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    March 3-5, 2010 — Orlando, Florida

    Presented by SNA & SNPA — Only $495 to Attend

    Revenue hungry publishers will not be disappointed! The strategic revenue summit is shaping up to be one of the best conferences ever. Plan now to attend.

    New session descriptions/new speakers added — see below:

    • Non-traditional revenue streams — a fast paced panel led by Gareth Charter. We're talking new and innovative — things like gift card programs, premium subscription models, online consumer stores, deal sites, event marketing and paid content. A follow up session will include small group exercises to uncover what conference attendees are doing to drive non-traditional revenue at their companies.
    • Think classified is dying a slow death? Think again. You will leave the "Top 10 Ways to grow your Classified Marketplace" session with a renewed enthusiasm about this category of business. The spectacular Beverly Crandon from Metroland Media Group will lead this thought-provoking and inspiring session.
    • One of SNPA's most dynamic board members, Jason Taylor, President/General Manager, Chattanooga Times Free Press, will present 75 ideas to build your future. This "idea guru" will also lead the Wednesday keynote — Reinventing our Sales Organizations for Tomorrow’s Opportunities. This session will examine everything from sales structure/compensation to creating an atmosphere of innovation to readjusting priorities/products sold. It will set the stage for the entire conference.
    • Sales structure — the debate continues. Online-only or print/online combos? Gordon Borrell will take on three publishers. Borrell says — "print reps can't sell online so stop trying". The publishers say, "they can and they will sell both". Bring your boxing gloves but more importantly, learn what is working.
    • New session speakers are being added regularly; check back often for new updates.

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    March 3-5, 2010 — Orlando, Florida

    Presented by SNA & SNPA — Only $395 to Attend

    Strategic Revenue Summit logo

    Plan now to attend the most exciting event scheduled for the newspaper industry in 2010 — a strategic revenue summit brought to you by two of the industry's premier associations, Suburban Newspapers of America and the Southern Newspaper Publishers Association.

    Publishers and top level executives are encouraged to bring senior staff including Advertising Directors, Interactive Managers and anyone that is charged with generating revenue.

    “Combining the SNA Spring Publishers' Conference and the SNPA Key Executives Conference into a single program that taps the strengths of both associations is a winning proposition on many levels," said Edward VanHorn, Executive Director of SNPA. "This joint effort will result in an exceptional conference program and an enhanced networking opportunity that will save SNA and SNPA members both time and money.”

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    Conference attendee photo
    Jon Rust, center, with Jack Robb, right, and Gareth Charter share a moment in Kansas City last week.

    By Deb Shaw

    Crowned with crystalline blue skies and wall to wall sunshine, Kansas City opened her arms to hundreds of media professionals last week and the embrace was strong and renewing. The spectacular weather and surrounding Country Club Plaza district with its stunning architecture and lively fountains seemed to mirror the disposition of those gathered for the SNA Fall Publishers’ and Advertising Managers’ Conference — confident, eager and bullish in their continued pursuit of leveraging the unique position that community media holds in markets across North America.

    According to E&P’s Jennifer Saba, who moderated the keynote session, “I was pleasantly surprised when I landed in Kansas City earlier (last) week for the Suburban Newspapers of America annual fall publishers' conference. The mood was extremely lively — not wake-lively either. I'm not the only one who noticed. Take it from John Cribb, principal of Cribb, Greene & Associates, who surely has one of the most difficult jobs in the world as a newspaper broker. Cribb noted a change in attitude this year compared to last: Community newspaper publishers and executives have a sense of optimism that was nowhere to be found in 2008.”

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    By Deb Shaw

    Mark Poss photo
    Mark Poss, CEO of Red Wing Publishing, shared insights about their web ad sales blitzes at the 2009 SNA Spring Publishers' Conference held in Tampa.

    We’ve all heard about the less is more concept. Perhaps you should consider following the lead of the folks at Red Wing Publishing in Minnesota and apply the principle to your website advertising. They did, and the results are impressive. So far, over 3 sales blitzes in the last 11 months, more than $225,000 in online ad commitments have been inked.

    ‘Nascarnage’ is how Red Wing CEO Mark Poss describes the old look of advertising on their sites. With a bunch of logos down the side, the original web advertising model was jumbled, off-putting and looked like a Nascar racecar cramming in sponsor logos. “It’s easy to spot newspapers which adhere to this dated model,” says Mike Blinder of The Blinder Group. “You can simply go to their Web site and look for a litany of small, boxed ads appearing one on top of the other, all the way down the side of the Web page.”

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