Home' Local Media Today : January 2008 Contents JANUARY 2008
TEN KEYS TO SUCCESS IN 2008
After attending dozens of industry conferences in 2007 and participating on
countless conference calls and webinars, it seems that publishers that commit
to the following should put themselves in a position of growth in 2008:
Create a marketplace environment on your web site (visit
www.ljworld.com for one of the best examples in the country). This com-
bines the power of local search with the best provider of local news in the
market and could finally be the answer for how community newspaper com-
panies will make real money on the web.
Be sure to have at least one recruitment expert on your staff (more for
larger companies) to aggressively pursue new opportunities. The new
SNA/Borrell report “Recruitment Outlook 2008” projects large gains for
community newspapers in the next three years while the metro dailies will
show declines. Contact Tanya Henderson (tanya.henderson@suburban-
news.org) for a copy of this report.
Spend more in travel dollars in 2008. Major and national advertisers are
looking at more options than ever before. The circulation declines at the
metro dailies are benefiting suburban newspapers in those markets. In most
cases, a face-to-face meeting is necessary
to secure this business. Strike while the
iron is hot!
Create an atmosphere of innovation (to
learn more attend the SNA Spring
Conference in February and hear the latest
research from Innosight on how to institu-
tionalize innovation at your company –
more details on page 1).
Input your rates into the LocalPoint
advertisers are providing amazing feed-
back and we expect to place some very
large schedules in the first quarter of 2008. If we don’t have your rates, we
can’t present your papers!
Participate on the SNA member conference calls in 2008 – free of charge.
We will conduct over 25 FREE calls next year covering topics important to
classified, retail, circulation and editorial. We are always amazed that more
don’t sign up for these calls. Go to the alliance section of www.suburban-
news.org for the complete first quarter schedule.
Make sure that at least one member of your company is signed up for the
SNA Interactive Media Alliance. In 2008, this will include twelve conference
calls/webinars and a customized research report about your web site – for a
very nominal fee. Visit the Interactive Media Alliance section on SNA’s web
site to sign up.
For those that publish paid weeklies, consider changing to a free model. If
your penetration is less than 30% (we have seen single digit penetration late-
ly), you will not be attractive to advertisers. For some, legal advertising is at
stake and in those cases, a free sister publication makes a lot of sense. Free
weeklies continue to grow and flourish.
Make sure that you offer a true self serve classified option on your web
site. This means a real e-commerce module that does not include a call back
from the newspaper. Many community web sites are not there yet.
Create a positive working environment during these challenging times.
Make employee morale a top priority and invest in your best people. It is
also a great time to go after top talent in the industry (people want to work
for the growth segment). We are seeing major shifts right now.
Here’s to a great 2008! Hope to see all of you at SNA events throughout the
year. As always, call on us and let us know what we can do for you.
From the sna
environment on your
web site - visit
one of the best
examples in the
follow up necessary to deliver for mem-
bers. SNA has become renowned for
being quick to respond to industry needs
and to innovatively lead so that the
flourishing community and suburban
newspaper industry can continue to suc-
cessfully print and web publish for its’
In beta testing at press time, SNA will
soon be launching interactive forums for
it’s members to communicate on a peer
to peer basis in real time. SNA’s I.T.
Director David Lee is working hard to
unveil interactive forums on SNA’s
website in early 2008 and said “the
launch of the forums is a good, and nat-
ural next-step for SNA to provide its
members with sharing and collaboration
mediums. We already have the in-per-
son collaboration with our conferences
and even our conference calls to some
extent, but creating an always-on, inter-
active component should really ramp-up
member discussions.” Expect this excit-
ing development soon.
The SNA Foundation’s Knight
Foundation grant project with The
Poynter Institute’s News University
(NewsU.org) to provide information and
tools to aid suburban and community
newspapers with their transition to a
digital world is well underway. Susan
Karol, Executive Director of the SNA
Foundation, along with three members
of the SNA Foundation board - Kirk
Davis (from GateHouse Media New
England), Ben Hall (from The Digital
Press Consortium and the Cape May
County Herald) and Chris Krug (from
NorthWest News Group of Greater
Chicago) - traveled to The Poynter
Institute in St. Petersburg, Florida for an
all-day session on December 13, 2007
with Howard Finberg, Director of
Interactive Learning for Poynter and
News University and his staff. It was an
incredibly productive and inspiring day
as they brainstormed areas where subur-
ban and community newspapers need
guidance and direction in regard to their
digital transformation, and honed think-
ing regarding the objectives of the e-
learning experience for community edi-
tors. The goal is to have the first SNA
Foundation NewsU e-course completed
by the end of the first quarter 2008.
Also, Howard Finberg is joining Susan
Karol for a session at the SNA Spring
Conference in February to report on the
e-course development. According to
Karol, “We are very excited about this
new collaborative partnership with The
Poynter Institute, which we are certain
will prove to be very beneficial well
into the future.”
LocalPoint Media is in full court press
mode - read about the current undertak-
ings in stories on pages 11 & 12.
SCAN has just concluded its’ best ever
year and is charging into 2008 with a
rebranding campaign. Read about it on
By Sharon Hill
Sales & Marketing Manager
As usual, SNA members were able to
count on Borrell Associates for sound,
insightful, well-researched and thorough
material. Borrell’s latest report to SNA,
“Recruitment Advertising Outlook
2008,” was first rolled out at SNA’s
Classified Managers’ Conference
November 14-16. This important
benchmarking tool was presented again,
with updates, on this latest Classified
Senior VP Peter Conti Jr. and CEO
Gordon Borrell looked at the past, pres-
ent and future of job advertising, offer-
ing a number of promising aspects for
our suburban and community newspa-
pers. Important points for newspaper
attendees included the change of market
share in the recruitment advertising
world; the forecast for revenue in the
next five years; the effect the aging of
baby boomers will have on unemploy-
ment ; the good fortune that frienemies
like HotJobs and Monster might portend
for newspaper classified bottom lines;
video will become increasingly more
important; and the concept that
recruiters are looking for quality, not
quantity, with regard to resumes.
The complete report is available on our
Web site, www.suburban-news.org .
Our first informative Classified Alliance
call for 2008, Thursday January 8,
“What we Learned in Tampa” will high-
light the many concepts, tools and best
practices that were discussed at the
Classified Managers’ Conference back
in November. If ever a call rolled many
new ideas into one hour, this is the one!
Once again, we thank Classified Avenue
(formerly SCAN), the suburban classi-
fied advertising network, for its spon-
sorship of our Classified Alliance calls.
To learn more or to participate in
Classified Avenue, call Deanna Lewis,
Director of Sales, at 207-384-5022.
Recruitment Advertising Outlook 2008
ON TO 2008
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