Local News Sites Present Opportunities For Local Entrepreneurs


Award-winning journalist, Robert Niles wrote an insightful story today about local journalism. I think he’s hit the nail on the head. The gist of his article is that many national news organizations have tried to penetrate local news markets but are usually unsuccessful. His theory is that unless you are part of a community, you have no right to expect that community to embrace you as a journalist. You don’t know the important locals. They have no attachment to you.

I believe that his point is correct and that it opens up opportunities for local entrepreneurs. Local news is still interesting to locals and there are no better people to share local news online than local businesspeople. And with WordPress and new online technologies available, it’s never been easier to start your own local news site.

I shared this information with my brother who is an insurance agent in a suburb of Chicago. Within a day or so, I had him doing a local news blog. Think of it. What value is there in sending your prospect base your latest insurance sale every week? None! All you’d do is bore and possibly offend them. Normal people would likely begin looking for the unsubscribe link in your emails.

But, a newsletter that shares information once a week on local happenings… that could be interesting to anyone who cares about their community – and you get to place a subtle but persistent advertisement about your insurance and financial services on the side of each handy newsletter. What better way to sustain “TOMA” or Top of Mind Awareness in your potential prospect’s minds.

Let’s face it. They don’t wake up every day thinking or caring about your insurance specials. They only need that kind of thing when they get married, buy a new house or car, have children, or start businesses. And when they do those things you want to be the agent that has TOMA in their minds.

So there is an opportunity and I’m sorry I digressed. The other opportunity is to provide this local news source and sell advertising. So many of us are looking for ways to make extra money. This can work and you have the advantages of working close to home while using your local advantage to beat your distant competitors to your market.

Read Mr. Niles’ Article… | Source: OJR.org | Date posted: 5/23/2012


Joe Martinico is a business consultant and trainer. He helps businesses to grow through best practices in sales and marketing automation. Mr. Martinico developed and teaches, Succeeding Online, a small business workshop sponsored by the Small Business Development Centers and the SBA.

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