For Publishers Only. Website Money Pit

Description of a training session and workshop that I do more often.

For Publishers Only. The Un-varnished Truth about Newspaper Website Business Models.

Mel Taylor Media exposes why most local media still operate their digital assets in the red. Even if web revenue & traffic have grown over the years, your likely treading water and losing share, no matter how much money you throw at it.

This session is not about sales tips & editorial tricks. It’s not a gee-whiz technology talk. This is not a ‘the future is bright if we only change’ lecture. Rather, we call out the 800 lb. elephant in the room: our sites are not being run like our traditional print business; where profits must come first.

Mel Taylor has first-hand knowledge of these issues and the mandatory fixes that must be applied. He has spent over 13 years working with traditional media and online-only ventures, in their frustrating pursuit of building profitable online businesses.

Topics discussed:

  • Pros & cons: the vendors of Internet services.
  • Attracting or making 3rd party digital investments
  • Who’s driving your Interactive bus? Do they have the proper license?
  • The enemy within. Rooting out the inside saboteurs
  • Outsourcing & cost reductions via the latest Internet technology
  • Killing the sacred cows. Stuff that doesn’t make sense anymore
  • The Checklist. 10 questions to reveal the limits of your online business model.
  • They’re quietly eating your lunch; stealth competitors in your own backyard. (Patch, etc)
  • The 100% solution. The only HR & commission structures that work for Web.

Session also provides well-documented examples of how local media is using in-expensive tech and tactics to increase editorial coverage, cut costs and drive new revenue. Examples:

  • Gannett outsources some ‘soft’ editorial creation to companies like Demand Media. Why this is smart, and how it allows Gannett to focus on hard news.
  • Pasadena media property uses ultra-low cost, internationally based call-centers for setting up small biz appointments. Instead of expensive reps spending time making cold calls, they’re on the street with average of 5 qualified, new-biz sales calls a day.
  • Partnerships with independent online journalists. Some were smart. Some were really dumb.

> Philadelphia Magazine uses for coverage of regional tech issues.
> New York Times uses for coverage of San Francisco
> Allbritton Communications pulled together 200 bloggers in Washington, DC area.

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