Why push notifications matter in an instant news world 8/16/16

With local news competing for screen time and "digital moments" from consumers, it is important to understand what brings your news ahead of others. During next month's News Industry Summit, learn how push notifications have changed the way mobile consumers capture information and how your news organization can maximize the opportunity.

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Rooms are running out in Sarasota 8/9/16

The News Industry Summit room block at the Ritz-Carlton in Sarasota is almost filled. Don't delay in getting your room.

Call (888) 838-3439 and reference SNPA to get the $189 group rate.

If you aren't registered, you are missing an incredible opportunity to learn how innovative media companies overcome obstacles, develop new revenue streams, engage audiences and turn around their traditional business models – lessons you can use at your own newspaper.

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The opportunity cost of content monetization 8/9/16

By Tom Ratkovich, managing partner, LEAP Media Solutions

While we might cut our way to short-term viability, Tom Ratkovich of LEAP Media Solutions says we can't cut our way to long-term prosperity. And the sometimes chaotic efforts to rapidly become "digital first" – rather than "customer first" – led to the disastrous customer experiences and privacy concerns that have, in turn, been manifested in ad blockers and, frighteningly, digital revenue declines at some highly visible publishing companies.

At first blush, content monetization seems a reasonable pursuit. Such pursuit has taken many forms, but two of note include (1) the broad domain of "paywalls" or metering of digital content, and (2) aggressive pricing actions for both print and digital content.

Why does Ratkovich say reasonable "at first blush?" Read this article to find out -- and then learn more at the News Industry Summit!

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How a 100-year-old tri-weekly became a champion of innovation 8/8/16

Two years ago, the Forsyth County News in Cumming, Ga., had a strict rule: The staff would only post one article to Facebook per day, and it was always at 6 a.m.

Since then, the three-day per week, 100-year-old community newspaper located 30 miles north of Atlanta has transformed everything – its culture, its products and its partnerships within the community – to create a "snowball effect" of positive momentum.

In a Thursday morning session at the News Industry Summit (Sept. 14-16 in Sarasota), Publisher Vince Johnson will discuss the paper's revenue-generating video platform, award-winning "Best Of" model, strategic advertising initiatives and more about how a stale local newspaper became the winner of the 2016 Mega-Innovation Award.

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Want to get really digital? Get rid of digital! 8/8/16

The Sun-Sentinel of Fort Lauderdale, Fla., undertook an ambitious change in structure, job duties and workflow in 2014 that no longer relies on digital specialists. Content creators are tasked with ... creating content – in the form that best serves readers. They are liberated from production obligations. Their editors don't participate in meetings that target stories to Page One or certain sections. They don't even know about news hole. They don't think in terms of daily and Sunday.

If the best way to tell a story is to live-tweet it, that's what reporters do. A video instead of a gallery? How about a video instead of narrative text, if that's what serves readers?

A separate team is tasked with creating the print edition from their work.

This isn't digital first. If producing a printed newspaper proved to have been short-sighted, then producing print and digital products is doubling down on a bad idea. Digital first? No. It's content first. It's reader-first.

At the News Industry Summit in Sarasota, receive a report from the front lines. Sun-Sentinel Publisher and Editor-in-Chief Howard Saltz will discuss the hits, misses (the foosball table) and some unexpected benefits.

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How a 100-year-old tri-weekly became a champion of innovation 8/8/16

Two years ago, the Forsyth County News in Cumming, Ga., had a strict rule: The staff would only post one article to Facebook per day, and it was always at 6 a.m.

Since then, the three-day per week, 100-year-old community newspaper located 30 miles north of Atlanta has transformed everything – its culture, its products and its partnerships within the community – to create a "snowball effect" of positive momentum.

In a Thursday morning session at the News Industry Summit (Sept. 14-16 in Sarasota), Publisher Vince Johnson will discuss the paper's revenue-generating video platform, award-winning "Best Of" model, strategic advertising initiatives and more about how a stale local newspaper became the winner of the 2016 Mega-Innovation Award.

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Aug. 26 is cut-off date for room block at News Industry Summit 8/1/16

Have you reserved your hotel room for the News Industry Summit, set for Sept. 14-16 in Sarasota? If not, please act right away. The cut-off date for rooms in our discounted room block ends after Aug. 26, and rooms in the block may sell out before then.

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'How to' instructions for digital strategies to be offered at Summit 8/1/16

Feeling digitally dumb? Don't worry, we all do. Things change far too quickly in the digital space with Google and Facebook changing its algorithms almost every quarter.

Over the last year, Observer Media Group in Sarasota, Fla., decided to refocus on some basic digital offerings with unique selling propositions that offer profitable results. Get real "how to" instructions on implementing these products and strategies at the 2016 News Industry Summit, Sept. 14-16 in Sarasota.

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Scenario Planning: The kind of thinking that can change your future 7/25/16

Newspaper companies aren’t the only ones that need to figure out how to replace declining revenues. Even giants like Procter & Gamble always have products in decline and products that need to be replaced.

So how does P&G plan to replace lost revenue – and how can newspaper companies do the same? And when they do, where can they get the money needed to bring on new sources of revenue?

Steve Gray will explain the P&G model and offer a pragmatic strategy by which your company could fund its own needed new revenue initiatives. Don't miss this session at the News Industry Summit, set for Sept. 14-16 in Sarasota.

Gray is vice president of strategy and innovation with Morris Communications in Augusta, Ga., where he has worked since 2009.

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News Industry Summit fees to increase next week 7/25/16

Registration fees for the News Industry Summit will increase by $100 per person on Monday, Aug. 1. Register by Sunday before early-bird rates end.

This year's News Industry Summit is set for Sept. 14-16 in Sarasota, Fla. This is a joint conference sponsored by the Southern Newspaper Publishers Association, the Florida Press Association and the Florida Society of News Editors.

Companies that do business with newspapers also need to act soon to reserve exhibit space and sponsorships. Time is running out to get your listing and ad in the printed conference program.

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