Link below includes 3-minute video clip.
The importance of the newsroom and of newspapers publishing engaging, relevant, local news was emphasized again and again by media executives on the "Investing in Newspapers" panel at the recent Key Executives Mega-Conference.
Over the last 13 years, the newspaper industry has lost more than 1,400 newspapers in the U.S. to closures, mergers and the downsizing of smaller free-standing newspapers that have become editions of larger regional ones, said Penelope Muse Abernathy, Knight Chair, Digital Media Economics, School of Media and Journalism at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.
"We've lost more than 1,000 newspapers," she said, "but the decline in circulation has been even more dramatic. It's been halved. Total print circulation – that includes all weeklies and dailies – has declined from 117 million to 67 million, the biggest drop coming in dailies."
She said, "The average print circulation of a daily newspaper in 2018 is 20,000. Since 2004, more than a third of all newspapers have changed hands and about half of them have changed hands two times or more."
When calculcated based on the number of newspapers (not on the circulation of those papers), she said the top 25 companies own a third of the nation's newspapers and control about 50 percent of print circulation.
Three of those companies – Adams Publishing Group, Hearst and AIM Media Management – were among the conference panelists.MORE
For Nate Rodriguez, participation in the NEX GEN program did not go according to plan. Still, he said, it helped him handle a career crisis.
About three months into the 2015-16 mentoring program, Rodriguez suddenly lost his job at the Las Vegas Review-Journal following its purchase by local billionaire Sheldon Adelson. Selected first- and second-level executives were let go or re-assigned, Rodriguez said. At the time he was senior director of advertising/classified, agency, niche and magazines.
Rodriguez needed some mentoring in a hurry, and is grateful to his assigned NEX GEN mentor, Jeremy Halbreich, chairman and CEO of AIM Texas Media in Dallas.MORE
Read about the latest job openings posted on the SNPA website. And, send us your listings to post at no cost.More
Five years after its inception, Main Street Media of Tennessee is a fast-growing media company operating in the suburbs of Nashville. Publishers of eight weekly newspapers, magazines and websites, the company's focus on hyper-local news unique to each community has allowed it to grow ad revenue as well as circulation.
In three weeks, at the SNPA News Industry Summit, hear how a "print-first" operation has been able to buck the trends and set itself on a path for continued growth.
Dave Gould, president and CEO of Main Street Media, says: "The idea that people no longer want to read newspapers is, in my opinion, completely misguided. But as an industry, we have to be honest and ask ourselves if we are offering our communities a product that will attract and retain readers. If we do that, can we then build a business model that will support our efforts to provide readers with strong newspapers? I believe the answer is 'yes' and that has been the basis of our company's growth to this point."More