Online news

Print ad sales down almost 30 percent

Statistics just posted on the NAA website show that print ad sales were down 27.9 percent in the first quarter of this year. Online sales fell 13.4 percent.
But the worse news was what happened to classifieds, where sales fell an astounding 42.3 percent.
Newspaper ad sales for last year were off by 16.6 percent, which the NAA said was the worse 12 months in the recorded history of the industry.

Online news Sports coverage

New high school sports site shows the possibilities for prep sports on the Net

The NAA reported this week that the Dallas Morning News’ high school sports Website, HS GameTime, now averages nearly 2 million pageviews a month. Visit the site and look at it as a treasure trove of ideas for what you could be doing for the high schools in your readership area. Football season is just around the corner, and now is a great time to tool up a Website that can draw all kinds of fan interest – and advertising dollars. GameTime generates so much traffic because it offers what no newspaper has the news hole to do – stats, scores and schedules, standings, rankings, videos, slide shows, and the like. Plus, they let readers submit photos and videos of their teams. To that, you should add videos of your band at halftime, cheerleaders doing their routines, and photos and videos of what’s happening in the stands and on the bench during the games – all the off-action stuff that we never have room for in the paper but people love to see.

Who’s the audience for this type of coverage? Athletes and their parents, band members and their parents, cheerleaders and their parents, other family and friends, local sports fans, high school kids who’d never even think of picking up your paper, and so on. Build this site, and they will come. And when they come, advertisers will, too.

Future of news Online news

Is Google a ‘market disruptor’ or ‘market destroyer’?

Rafe Needleman’s piece on Google’s business practices it quite interesting. He dissects the many industries Google has touched, and shows that journalism isn’t the only industry that has had the rug pulled out from under it by the Internet. On Needleman’s list: journalism (of course), telecommunications, computer operating systems, e-mail and advertising.

Online news Paid content

Fees may return to online news

News executives around the country are talking more and more about a perceived need to charge for online news, but those that are trying to monetize journalism on the Internet are finding it’s not as simple as it seems.

Future of news Online news Social media

Creating news as a “user experience”

Cindy Royal, a faculty member at Texas State University in San Marcos, has a great piece in Online Journalism Review about how news organizations can create “user experiences” on their websites. Some of her examples, such as the New York Times products she references, may seem out of reach for community newspapers, but many of them are very easy to do with free online tools that are already out there.

Online news Social media Twitter

Build the community in community journalism using social media

In a short video interview, Kevin Hessel from the Marin Independent Journal shares some of the ways he uses social media at the Marin (Cali.) Independent Journal to engage readers.

Online news

5 tips to help your site’s Google News performance

Ben McClanahan shares some tips for newspapers for getting their sites indexed on Google News. He also links to a Google blog post that has some great information. Ben’s entire blog is dedicated to search engine optimization for newspapers, so check it out. He has tips on everything from Web headlines to search engine submission.

New media Online news Twitter

The Journalist’s Guide to Twitter

Leah Betancourt, the digital community manager at the Minneapolis Star Tribune shares some tips for journalists on how to use Twitter, the popular micro-blogging site.