Newspapers are a business, yes, but do they serve a greater purpose? We at Above the Fold think so. We believe that it is in the newspaper’s best interest to offer breaking news related to the safety and security of its community members free of charge as to ensure that everyone has access to safety information whether they are subscribers or not. So, we were pleasantly surprised to hear that a number of papers have dropped their paywalls to accommodate subscribers and non-subscribers alike for safety information regarding Hurricane Sandy. The most prominent of these papers are the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal.
Jason Taylor closed the 2012 WCAA Conference in Las Vegas with an exciting presentation on creative ideas to boost event marketing revenue for your newspaper. He used his first-hand experiences creating beloved community events as the President of The Chattanooga Times Free Press. His speech, “From $0 to $2 Million: How to increase your event marketing revenue,” discussed the importance of creating a diverse menu of events for your town and offered examples of some of the great events he and the newspaper have organized in Chattanooga, Tenn.
On Tuesday Sept. 25, three members of the newspaper industry took the stage at the WCAA Conference to discuss their own papers’ best practices in the three major verticals: recruitment, real estate and automotive. The panel included Chelle Bize and Bryan Nelson of the Las Vegas Review-Journal and Mike Rutigliano of Glacier Media Group. Andy Vogel, the VP of Emerging Technologies at the LA Times, moderated the discussion, titled “Relevant Classified Verticals in a Competing Market Today.”
On Monday, Sept. 24, the first full day of the 2012 WCAA Conference, Shannon Kinney gave an illuminating presentation called, “Revenue Opportunities: What Would Google Do?” Kinney, the GM and Client Success Officer at Dream Local Digital, Inc., discussed how newspapers and their ad departments must reinvent themselves in order to remain relevant and offer their clients and readers a valuable product. As her presentation title indicates, Kinney believes that newspapers should look to Google as a role model for adapting with the changing advertising industry.
As day one of the 2012 WCAA Conference in Las Vegas comes to a close, attendees have already received lots of great ideas and information that will certainly be valuable to take back to the office. Current President Bill Cummings opened the first day of the conference with his keynote speech, “Leading Through Change: Leadership, Product Mix, Promotion, Pricing and Salespersons.” As we all know, the newspaper industry is changing, and Cummings’ speech emphasized that it’s time to make a commitment to adapting with it.
Facebook, the eight-year-old social network that has made its creators some of the youngest billionaires in the world, reportedly will be opening a job board. According to The Wall Street Journal’s FINS.com, in early July, a source linked to the social network said that Facebook hopes to launch the job board later this summer.
Although a pay-wall does exist for The New York Times, the content on its website is also decidedly social. Unlike other newspapers with pay-walls, The New York Times allows articles to be viewed for free if they are accessed from another news source or social media outlet. This presentation, while a seemingly bad idea for The New York Times, as they may lose on revenue, is a great idea for news itself.
Randy Lopez, the Director of Account Services at Johnson Gray Advertising, will be joining us at the WCAA Conference in Las Vegas as one of our session presenters. He will be leading the discussion, “Social Mobility: Why you and your clients need to play in the social and mobile products.”
One of the sessions at the America East Conference spurred a lively discussion on the benefits of outsourcing or insourcing newspaper ad production. The panel included four presenters, three who advocated outsourcing ad production, and one who works for a company that does their ad production 100 percent in-house. The session, “Outsourcing Ads — The Pros, Cons and Requirements,” included speakers Toni Humphreys, the Director at Gannett Imaging and Ad Center, Lynn Banta, the CEO of Outsourcing USA, and Sherri Propis and Mike Johnson, Senior Director of Sales Operations and Customer Focus and Creative Services Manager, respectively, from The E.W. Scripps Company.
Peter Conti’s presentation, “Hyperlocal: Strategies for Success,” at the America East Technology and Operations Conference in Hershey, Pa., focused on the importance of the incorporating hyperlocal content and advertising on newspaper websites. In order for newspapers to stay ahead of the curve in today’s increasingly technological and digital society, they need to make their online presences both dynamic and relevant to the readers.
It is day two of the America East Conference in Hershey, Pa., and we have attended some excellent panels with information that you can use for your newspaper. There is a buzz of new ideas and exciting strategies to help build revenue in your department. The conference also stressed the importance re-inventing the footprint of the newspaper to reflect a more useful and comprehensive product.
This year’s SCAMA Conference was held at the Savannah Morning News in Savannah, Ga. The conference kicked off Friday night with a delicious — not to mention dripping with butter — dinner from Paula Deen’s downtown Savannah restaurant, The Lady and Sons. Old friends and colleagues caught up, while new connections were made.
In one of the most talked about sessions, Bob Birkentall, Real Estate Director for GateHouse Media, Inc., offered a new approach to Real Estate advertising that showcased ways to update this struggling vertical. In his presentation “Real Estate—Multimedia Packages and Partnerships That Work,” he opened with the three goals and initiatives that GateHouse is taking to embrace digital in 2012.
Jim Williams provided the opening comments for the 2011 SNA Classified Multimedia Conference. You might notice something a bit different this year — the addition of the word “multimedia” to the title. Williams explained that now, more than ever, classifieds are more than print — we need to focus our attention online. The addition of multimedia foreshadowed the topics that followed. The conference gave attendees a wealth of information to help improve the digital side of classifieds and aimed to give them that “one good idea” to bring back to the office Monday morning.
The automotive advertising vertical has always been one of newspaper’s strongest revenue generating categories. But with today’s competitive landscape, automotive profits are dwindling and this once robust assemblage is becoming increasingly volatile. In one of the most intriguing break out sessions of the week, Bryan Gilbert explained tested methods to regain your market share and increase your newspaper’s automotive revenue.
The entire week was jam-packed full of valuable sessions and conversation that really will allow CAMs to walk away from this conference and implement ideas within just 30 days. Although, the general consensus was that not all of the speakers were vital to the success of the conference, most sessions inspired interactivity and conversation that allowed individuals from every newspaper to share ideas.
As the annual WCAA kicked off this morning in a somewhat overcastted San Diego, Calif., we welcomed Arte Nathan, President of Strategic Development Worldwide, an upstate New York native, now a “beach bum” by his own classification in Laguna Beach. Of course, before he made it to the beach, this “bum” had to prove himself in the big city — sin city. His enthralling presentation had the 50 (or so) attendees silent in anticipation, a notable challenge you’re surely quite familiar with in the newspaper industry. Arte Nathan spent 25 years in human resources for Atlantic City. He’s opened 12 hotels and hired over 100,000 employees; employees, he boasts, that are the best. He was a game changer in hospitality, and his hotels, ranging from the Mirage to Treasure Island and the Bellagio, are host to the world’s finest staffs, all because he believed in change.
Yesterday marked the first day of Hispanic Heritage Month in the U.S., a month-long celebration of Hispanic and Latino citizens. In light of that, we’re paying special attention to this growing demographic. According to the 2010 U.S. Census, the Latino population grew to more than 50 million — more than double its size in 1990 and up 46.3 percent since 2000. Latinos also happen to be the nation’s youngest ethnic group, with a median age of 27. The population is increasingly becoming more U.S.-born, with majority being bilingual.
SAN DIEGO, Calif. -- Some of the classified advertising industry's leading executives and managers will gather in San Diego next month to talk about staying ahead of the ever-changing worlds of real estate, automotive, recruitment and merchandise advertising.
The annual WCAA Conference has scheduled speakers from outside the newspaper industry to share best practices for building call centers, embracing change and networking.
Just over 40 members of SCAMA attended the conference in Jacksonville a few weeks ago. It was my first time at a SCAMA conference, but it certainly won’t be my last. It was great to see old friends and make new ones. The weekend was Southern hospitality at its best. Everyone was very welcoming and of course it was nonstop chatter from Friday to Sunday all on our favorite topic—Classified.
Last February, the Suburban Newspapers of America (SNA), the Southern Newspaper Publishers Association (SNPA), and Inland Press joined forces in St. Petersburg, FL at the Multimedia Key Executives conference. With speakers like Gordon Borrell, Mike Blinder and Mel Taylor, this mega conference drew a staggering attendance of over four hundred attendees. As the name implies, the conference delved into all facets of multimedia, from a publisher’s point of view, journalism, and sales.
At SNA’s 2010 Classified Advertising Conference in Chicago, Ill. this past November, Cheryl Phillips, former VP of Classified at Toronto Star and current President of Cape Sales Development, Inc., gave the crowd insight on industry best practices, to lead your classified revenue. Phillips discussed the characteristics of a successful and effective classified leader, performance expectations in the changing industry, and how to manage and grow your classified business and revenue. The program, designed for ad directors and managers, also included valuable information for sales reps in every vertical, including transportation.
This September, at the 2010 WCAA Classified Conference in Anaheim, Calif., the Charles Horn Memorial Award was presented to Rebecca Bradner of The Las Vegas Review-Journal. The reigning recipient, Sandra Riggins of the Tucson Newspapers, gave the award. This award recognizes Rebecca’s outstanding achievements in classified advertising and her exceeding contributions to her community, her newspaper and the newspaper industry.