The Inlander

March 2019

Digital Edition of the Inland Press Association. Offering financial research, salary compensation survey, training for advertising, classifieds, editorial, circulation, social media, human resources, special sections and niche products.

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Mailed from Sterling, Ill. MARCH 2019 Vol. 34, No. 3 INL ANDER T H E Stay engaged. Find solutions. Move forward. 2019 KEY EXECUTIVES MEGA-CONFERENCE TAKING READERS FOR A SWIM IN A REVENUE STREAM There were times during last month's Mega-Conference in Las Vegas when you might have thought you'd stumbled into a Society of Professional Jour- nalists meeting. Editors led a session on newsroom culture. Academics brought research on trustworthy journalism. A newspa- per's chief technology officer talked about how his job was to free up jour- nalists so they could do what they do best. Thinking about starting up a magazine in print or making special sections that attract larger audiences? There were sessions and product demonstrations for that. Look a little deeper into all those sessions, though, and one theme becomes clear: How to get more revenue from readers. The newsroom culture session was about getting journalists to think more like publishers and help drive digital subscriptions. The CTO talked about testing and changing headlines and story "variants" based on click-through rates. The magazine and special section session concentrated on creating content people will pay for. This was a Mega-Conference that repeatedly concerned itself with the "subscription economy" as it's being called these days. "Our content is valuable and people will pay for it," declared Curtis Huber, The Seattle Times senior director of circulation and audience research. "More and more people are paying for digital. Millennials are paying for it because they understand that it is valuable and important to the future of democracy." B e s i d e s, s p e a ke r s e m p h a s i z e d repeatedly, everyone's become more comfor table with subscribing for content, whether it's Netflix for movies or Spotify for music or any number of MEMBER FOCUS A Few minutes with Scott Campbell PAGE 6 CONTINUED ON PAGE 7 NOW ON THE TABLE, EXPLORING A MERGER WITH THE SNPA I want to update you on an important matter involving your association. The Inland Board of Directors voted late last month to explore the possibility of a merger with the Southern News- p a p e r P u b l i s h e r s Association. H e re ' s why the boards are c o n s i d e r i n g this. In this time of s i g n i f i c a n t i n d u s t r y change, there is a critical need for an industry association that provides voice and focus equal to the chal- lenges of our new reality. We believe this combination would do that. We want to create a new association that will be the champion of the news- paper industry and a voice promoting the value and contributions of news- papers to their communities. We will e m b r a c e t h i s n e w r o l e wh i l e continuing to support members as they adapt their business models to a changing landscape. Over the next few months, we will develop a proposal to present to the Inland and SNPA boards and to you, our members. This proposal will include a business plan, branding and marketing details, gover nance structure, and details about staffing, funding and dues. If both boards approve the proposal, we'll then ask you to vote on the plan. The Inland board and I welcome your input as these discussions continue. Meanwhile, we just completed the highly successful Key Executives Me ga-Conference in Las Ve gas. Attendance was strong, the number of exhibitors was up—but perhaps more important, the very atmosphere was up. This was not a gathering of a beat down, uncertain industry, but one that is tackling its challenges with optimism and the knowledge it has the tools to succeed. During those three days, Mega-Con- f e re n c e at t e n d e e s h e a rd f ro m outstanding speakers laying out prac- tical steps to success along a broad range of industry issues from the newsroom to IT center to the cloud and to advertising and marketing departments. Inland will be rolling out more opportunities for growth for you and your organization, starting next month with the industry's only conference focused on newspaper human resources professionals. The Virtual HR Conference will take place online for one and a half days April 10 and 11. With this conference you can gather your entire HR team to hear from industry experts, all for just one registration fee. Later next month, from Friday April 26 through Sunday the 28th, Inland is partnering with 360 Media Alliance to present the Audience & Loyalty Mega Summit Central at the Marriott St. Louis Airport. For news- paper executives responsible for audience growth or circulation or branding, this conference is a must- attend. And for those tasked with growing revenue—and really, isn't that the job of everybody at a newspaper—Inland in June is bringing Mission One: Revenue 2019 to the Richmond Times-Dispatch. The program is focused on all the opportunities now available to increase our top lines. Mark your calendar for June 11-13. These conferences reflect how your association's mission—Stay engaged. Find solutions. Move forward—is a year-round commitment. REPORT FROM THE PRESIDENT DOUG PHARES HONOR BOXES' SECOND LIFE A member of Leadership Wilkes-Barre converting newsboxes donated by the Times Leader for use as free libraries. The six donated boxes were repainted and placed in front of businesses as part of the Pennsylvania group's "Learning With Books: A Little Free Library Project." People can take a book or leave a book. In effect, the converted honor boxes continue the mission of newspapers to advance reading, said Leadership Wilkes-Barre group leader Megan Filak.

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