While newspapers have existed since the dawn of the printing press, many newspaper publishers are looking to the future for revenue growth. With this futuristic outlook comes many changes, both large and small, but at the same time, these changes are also planned to occur by sticking to basic principles. Below are just a few of the many ways that publishers can take advantage of the changing publishing landscape without changing their core values in 2015:
Inclusion of Digital is a Must
Whether you spend the majority of your day on the Internet or not, it’s likely that you have realized that digital publishing is now a force to be reckoned with. While traditional newspaper publishing is still a stalwart, the digital platform has gained ground in such a high capacity that it would be professional suicide to ignore it altogether.
With that stated, it’s important for publishers to find a balance between print and digital. In cases where it seemed to be the conventional wisdom, publications such as Newsweek, which tried to go all digital, found out quickly that consumers still yearned for the print version of the magazine, and as a result, traditional publication resumed (even if after a bit of embarrassing publicity.)
Event Sponsorships to Start Conversations
Another area where publishers can step up their game in 2015 is by getting involved in event sponsorships that start conversations. Essentially, newspapers report the news, and at the end of the day, that is their primary function. However, your newspaper could take things a step further by sponsoring events that call out specific causes, such a domestic violence or healthcare.
The point of such a sponsorship should not be to take a side, as that would be unprofessional. Instead, your paper’s involvement would be meant to get people talking about specific issues, either publically or privately, in order to spur a larger discussion. Once again, a careful balance must be struck in order to retain objectivity, even when involving common sense issues.
Social Media Engagement
In the past, engagement with a news publication typically consisted of letters to the editor or opinion pieces, but these days, customer engagement is often most effective and efficient when completed online through social media. As a result, your publication not only needs to have a social media presence, but it also needs to have dedicated, competent professionals behind it.
Simply put, starting a Facebook page for your publication and then ignoring it is not going to cut it. You need to start the page, man it at least during the day with people who are skilled in public relations, and then ensure that comments, concerns, questions, spam, and other user-submitted content is dealt with professionally and swiftly, all in a manner that is consistent with your brand. This means that you shouldn’t have the office intern answering questions or responding to feedback, a strategy that could be disastrous. Instead, hire in-house or agency partners who will be able to respond in a courteous manner to everything ranging from compliments to criticism.