Audience Development for Local Publishers

Shweiki Media teams up with Brian Ostrovsky, Founder and CEO of the online publishing network Locable, to present a must-watch webinar on how local publishers can improve their audience development, convert print readers into web visitors and web visitors into social media sharers, and ultimately increase the reach of their brand across the Internet.

or Download the full audio podcast presentation here

Engaging From Print to Web

The first thing one should do is signal that the website is not simply a replication of the print product. The next thing is implementing contextual calls to action—i.e. taking a reader who’s read an article or piece of content and, while they’re still interested, present them with a call to action to engage, so that in order to find out more about the topic, they don’t go to Google; they go to the source.

In-This-Issue Approach

There are certain fundamentals involved in this approach. The first is posting existing content online. Have a photo gallery? Post it as a gallery. Talking about an event? Post it on the calendar. Talking about a business? Ensure it’s in the directory. The key is posting the content and posting it in a way that looks good and is easy to navigate and, of course, shareable.

The next step is creating an “In-This-Issue” article. It’s a special article that can be thought of as a letter from the editor or letter from the publisher. But what’s important is below the article/letter, inserting links to content from the issue, which connects the dots on the table of contents.

It’s not enough to simply have the article, though; it’s important to funnel readers there, which can be done by linking the article to a large graphic (perhaps in a prominent place like a sidebar) on the homepage. Then, with every new issue, one can simply update the graphic and link it to the new in-this-issue article. They key is just making it prominent and in-your-face, so that once someone sees it once, they’ve been trained to look for it again.

Local Advertising

Only at the local level are readers and advertisers one in the same. For example, take when advertisers call after seeing the publication, saying “I want to be in here, too.” This is exponentially more true online because online platforms allow them to truly engage. They’re commenting, they’re posting events, they have a directory listing—they’re doing things that can help promote their business. And as the owner of the site, one has visibility and access to the information that is actionable. It allows one to literally get businesses to come to them.

 

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