Many people may say the newspaper industry is on its way out. It’s no surprise that the industry has been declining because of the change in technology, but it is in no way on the way out. That would be like saying the news is dying. This gives many of us an opportunity to embrace the change, not fight it. Technology is now on our side. There are many tools, templates, and software out there to help newspapers achieve their full potential. All these tools can help newspapers grow if we notice the opportunities in front of us.
Communication is Key
I have the pleasure of working for Fake Brains software, and we make software specifically for newspaper and media publishers. We see firsthand successful traits found in flourishing papers. First and foremost, a shared trait is open communication between offices. Most of these publishers have an efficient process for communicating between their staff and offices. Having a good method for sending orders to production, billing, and all departments help publishers optimize their repeatable tasks. You want to have the minimal handling of an order. You should always ask “why” or “how” about your own process and decisions. This can help you identify a process that should be reevaluated.
Specialty Product (Supplement)
Another shared characteristic between successful publications is that they tend to have a supplement or specialty product. Having multiple products can diversify your product portfolio and give you higher margins. Many publishers make the bulk of their profits from having a supplement paper or product. If you are debating adding a supplement product, think in terms of your reader. What would interest my reader? What could add value to them? Would this added supplement be a benefit? Since your distribution is already set up, it tends to be easy to add in a specialty product. You may also discover that you might gain unique advertisers for your supplement, those who might not otherwise participate in your traditional newspaper.
People may be tentative to believe in newspapers as our society starts to learn more and more to the digital world. This gives papers the unique opportunity to have both a digital and print component. For some, it may make sense to shift to a digital newsletter with a paper aid. Instead of only having ad space in newspapers, you could start selling digital ad space too.
Many top-performing papers have a software that is critical to their daily operations. This enables them to work more efficiently than without the software. Invest in a software that will help you grow as a business and do more than you could without it. If you could do more without the software, then it’s time to reevaluate the software you are using.
Sales are the lifeline of any business. Your sales reps are valuable assets. What can you do for them? Well, CRM software is one way to help newspaper reps sell more! Because of the change in technology, many sales reps have loved the new tools that give them the ability to sell more ad space and hit higher commissions than they ever had. If you invest in your reps, you are investing in your future. It is always smart to keep your sales reps happy.
Reports are the best way to see how your business is performing. When evaluating the reports of software, you should look at customization, date period, time to generate, and how many reports they have. You should pinpoint where and when an advertiser fell off or who are expiring next month in less than two minutes. These reports are a great way to see where you can improve your business. Reporting is a tool for your staff to make their lives easier as well. Don’t underestimate the importance of reports.
Find a software that your business cannot live without but can grow because it’s implemented.
People are always going to need newspapers. The newspaper of yesterday might be different than the newspaper of tomorrow, but nevertheless, newspapers will always be here.