A very old adage for entrepreneurial success is, “find a need and fill it“. As Nipawin News nears it’s first anniversary, there is no doubt that I have found, not just one, but multiple needs within the Town of Nipawin and the North East region of Saskatchewan.
The need for local news is there, as is the need for that news to be freely accessible to everyone. Between the enormous amount of work it takes to publish that news and having battled with personal health issues over the past few months it has become abundantly clear to me that, in order to continue, I need a team.
While Nipawin News started as a digital news media, it is growing to be far more than that. As the needs of the area become obvious, the need to provide a community portal will guide our expansion. Needs like a comprehensive calendar of events, obituaries, club and organization news, job listings, classified ads, business and club directories, in-depth event articles and follow up reports after the events, town hall coverage, and investigative reports on local issues.
And our new team will go beyond the one sided business of reporting and disseminating information. We will be working hard interacting with the communities in North East Saskatchewan. We will work with clubs and other non profit organizations to help them promote their events, raise funds and increase their visibility in the region. Our team will provide a wealth of marketing services for the local businesses that support Nipawin News including social media training for their staff and new and exciting marketing opportunities exclusively for Nipawin News advertisers.
The first step of the planned expansion will be to move Nipawin News from my home office into a commercial setting. When that happens, I will be hiring an office manager to start and, as goals are reached, that will expand to include two more staff members.
All the team will be fully trained to ensure Nipawin News continues to provide news and content in the same manner my readers have grown to trust. In addition to those three jobs created, opportunities for local freelance writers and photographers will be plentiful, not just news but a multitude of other writing and photography assignments.
Community involvement starts right now!
The expansion is still in the planning stages, however community members are invited to be a part of the successful expansion now. Non profits, municipalities and local businesses are welcome to contribute to Nipawin News. Follow the links below to check out ways you can contribute and discover benefits for your organization! Working together we can put Nipawin on the map!
Readers and followers can help too!
Just because you don’t have news or community information to offer, doesn’t mean you can’t help. There are many ways our readers and followers can be a part of our success.
- Share Nipawin News articles – Even though Nipawin News is almost a year old and our Facebook group has been around for 3 years, there are still plenty of North East residents who are still discovering it daily. Every time you, the reader, shares an article you are helping your friends and family find out more about what is happening in the area and helping Nipawin News to win over new followers.
- Invite your friends from the North East to join the Nipawin News Facebook group – Again, you are helping them as much as Nipawin News. Joining the Facebook group gives members a source of news from Nipawin News, as well as coverage of local news from multiple other media outlets.
- Support our business supporters! – Every banner ad from local businesses links to their website or Facebook page. Show your appreciation to those advertisers by taking the time to click on those banners and check out what they have to offer, or like and follow their Facebook page. You might learn something new about a business you didn’t know! And when you are shopping, don’t be afraid to tell those businesses that you appreciate their support of local journalism!
- Become a Nipawin News Supporter – You can show your appreciation for the past year and support to help keep Nipawin News thriving, by either setting up a monthly support payment or by just making a one time contribution. Your contributions will go towards costs of running the website, upgrades to the software used, costs of getting out and covering events in the region plus contribute to our fund to compensate local writers and photographers.
Throughout the news industry, media outlets struggle to adapt to the rapidly changing needs of advertisers and readers. Big corporations, like Google and Facebook, continue to siphon advertising revenues, as reader subscriptions are dropping for many publications. The entire industry is at an experimental stage. Hundreds of organizations and businesses have devoted their time to developing new revenue models for digital news media. One consensus among the vast majority is that media outlets can no longer count on advertisers for the majority of their revenues. Paywalls, which limit articles to subscribers, only work for some publications but aren’t suitable for others.
After months of research and planning, I have chosen to offer readers a way to help me supplement advertising revenues on Nipawin News.
Covering the costs of operations
Contributions from readers go towards;
- The basic costs of running Nipawin News can be covered
- Important upgrades can be made to the website, enabling Nipawin News subscribers to sign up for custom tailored newsletters and other personalized options
- A fund for local freelance writers and photographers can be established
- The costs of travel to events and to cover news stories will allow increased local coverage
To be perfectly honest, I have battled a long time with the concept of asking readers for support, however, since so many of my readers have made it clear that is what they want, I am now making that option available.