Buy an ad, get one free 11/8/16

By Jane Nicholes, SNPA Correspondent
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY  

The Sumter Item's new TV book sold out of advertising before its first issue, making Editor and Publisher Jack Osteen a believer in the concept.

"If you don't have it, and you don't already have a good TV product on the weekends, then it's worth doing," Osteen said.

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Why great storytelling starts with visuals, planning 11/1/16

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY  

The Sarasota Herald-Tribune's recently published “What happened to Mason?” is a seven-part narrative by Chris Anderson on the mystery behind a missing solider. In addition to superb storytelling, the newsroom devoted a great deal of effort to the visuals.

Jennifer Borresen, the newspaper's projects visualization editor, explained the importance of telling stories visually in high-end projects and the lessons she learned from the creation process.

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Increase newsletter engagement with A/B testing 10/18/16

By John Crouch, social media coordinator, GateHouse Media's Center for News & Design
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY  

For newsrooms, A/B testing can be a powerful tool for gaining insight into audiences to see how best to engage with readers.

Earlier this year, StarNews participated in A/B testing with the newsroom's Facebook account, testing which types of content struck more of a chord with followers. The staff was able to establish some important best posting practices. Read about them here!

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Here’s some trivia: What’s worth your while? Quizzes 9/12/16

By Tim Schmitt, project manager, GateHouse Media
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY  

You've got a whole checklist of things to do, so why carve time out of your busy schedule to post a quiz on your website? You might be surprised at the return on time investment.

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Databases for education reporting and back-to-school coverage 8/30/16

By John Crouch, social media coordinator, GateHouse Media's Center for News & Design
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY  

Schoolhouse (reporting) rocks, because of the infinite amount of reporting to be done, but can also be a little overwhelming for the same reason. Here are some favorite databases for school data that all reporters ought to have in their arsenal.

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Use Google Sheets for your online prep sports stats 8/2/16

By Tim Schmitt, project manager, GateHouse Media
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY  

It is imperative to have a plan for the fall sports season. What's wonderful about the prospect of a new school year is the potential to update not just the master plan, but also the processes you use to fill those plans.

Here's a prime example: Why not update the way you keep high school sports statistics?

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Return of the society section 7/26/16

By Jane Nicholes, SNPA Correspondent
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY  

The State in Columbia, S.C., has just gone old school. At the beginning of July, The State began printing free announcements of engagements, weddings, anniversaries and debutantes. And, the publisher is reporting phenomenal response. "Readers love it."

The service is cross-promoted on social media and with The State's Carolina Brides magazine.

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How to make a basic Google map 7/25/16

By Nicole Simmons, regional digital editor, GateHouse Media New England
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY  

Here's how you can make a "basic" map with just one or two points on it. Because, you know, people like to know where things are happening.

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5 data mapping tool alternatives to Google Maps 4/19/16

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY  

Google's custom maps are a great place to start visualizing location data, and for many datasets, the tool does the trick. But don't stop there – beyond Google Maps there is a world of digital mapping tools full of different aesthetic and functional possibilities. Spark your inspiration with these five data mapping tool alternatives to Google Maps.

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Austin American-Statesman launches area’s go-to tech site: 512tech.com 3/28/16

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY  

As Austin's technology industry and community have grown, so has the Austin American-Statesman's coverage of them, leading to the development and launch of the tech-focused site, 512tech.com.

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