Tag Archives: Local media

paidContent: Northcliffe plans to tap into hyperlocal network for advertising revenue

The Daily Mail and General Trust (DMGT) says its regional publisher Northcliffe will “tap its LocalPeople hyperlocal network” in an attempt to reach more advertisers online, paidContent reports.

According to the group’s preliminary results published yesterday, Northcliffe recorded several declines in the year ending October 2010, with underlying revenues down £16 million (six per cent), reported revenues have dropped by 8 per cent and advertising revenues were also down by 7 per cent.

Presenting the results yesterday morning, CEO Martin Morgan told investment analysts that the group is “trying to give ourselves a good shot at capturing local information markets”, paidContent reports.

“We’re going to be taking the technology platform we’ve built (for LocalPeople) and merging it with the ThisIs sites,” Morgan told analysts. “So local people can concentrate on finding a garage, finding a plumber in such a way that provides a long tail of local advertisers – people who aren’t advertising in the local press, we think we can get them in.

Towards a hyperlocal business model?

Using data from OpenlyLocal, Greenwich.co.uk publisher hyperlocal.co.uk has created a map showing the concentration of hyperlocal websites in the UK.

Hyperlocal may be a word that is too freely used: is a city-based website hyperlocal? Or should it be postcode- or street-based? Then again, why decide? Hyperlocal.co.uk’s map shows the huge range of ‘hyperlocal’ sites operating in the UK and where such local media is currently lacking.

Compare this with a map from advertising solution Addiply of all its hyperlocal clients – ranging from independents to networks like the new STV local offering and Guardian Local. If the number of markers on this map grows, hyperlocal publishers will be able to see their network growth to lure more advertisers, particularly those bigger brands that buy digital ad space UK-wide, but which have media buyers operating from a central office.

While we’re on the subject of hyperlocal sites finding new commercial opportunities, it’s worth mentioning hyperlocal pioneer The Lichfield blog, which in partnership with a local printing co-operative Sabcat Printing has started selling T-shirts from an online shop – Viva LichVegas. It’s something Scottish website GreenerLeith does too – making pounds and publicity, and an interesting experiment in hyperlocal business models.

Enders’ Douglas McCabe: Regional newspaper forecast was ‘unnecessarily pessimistic’

A media analyst from Enders Analysis has said the company’s prediction that half of the UK’s 1,300 regional newspapers would close in five years was “unnecessarily pessimistic”. Founder Claire Enders made the forecast in evidence to the House of Commons Culture, Media and Sport Committee in June last year.

“You aren’t seeing closures on anything like that scale, and we haven’t seen the all-important dailies closing,” Douglas McCabe from Enders told the Society of Editors conference today.

Read the full report on Douglas McCabe’s comments on HoldtheFrontPage.co.uk.

Johnston Press chief: BBC should be limited to three stories per city per day

A curious strategy by Johnston Press’ chief executive John Fry, who has reportedly written to the BBC Trust asking the body to limit the number of news stories the BBC’s website publishes online to three per city or region.

The BBC’s coverage could thwart JP’s plans to launch more paid-for digital services. No mention of its failed paywall pilots though…

Full story on Telegraph.co.uk at this link…

Greater Manchester Police tweeting a day’s crime

Greater Manchester Police is using Twitter to update followers on all the incidents reported to them within a 24-hour period. Speaking to the BBC today, GMP chief constable Peter Fahy said the experiment, which is being conducted on a series of accounts including @gmp24_4, was in part a response to the media’s coverage of police work.

“The media doesn’t understand the nature of day-to-day policing,” he told a BBC News report.

Speaking on Radio 4, Fahy also talked about local media:

[W]e find it more difficult to get out information particularly with the decline in local newspapers, so it’s very much about public information. But it’s also to give a better picture to the public of the reality of police work. Crime is obviously an important part of what we do, but it’s only one part and so we’re trying to show the variety of police work but also the way that so many of our incidents are realted to wider social problems.

Local TV operators criticise new service YouView in letter to Times

Plans for YouView, a new TV service offering on-demand and internet-connected features from BBC, ITV, Channel 4, Five, BT, TalkTalk and Arqiva, have been criticised by local TV operators and production firms.

Geraldine Allinson, chairwoman of KM Group and Helen Philpot, managing director of north Lincolnshire TV channel Channel 7 CIC, were amongst the signatories of a letter to the Times late last week that said YouView had been “parachuted” into the “new and exciting market” of internet-connected television sets.

The full list of signatories:

  • Peter Williams, Peter Williams Television;
  • Jim Deans Global Digital Broadcast/Devlin Media;
  • Graham Cowling, TVChichester;
  • Rodney Hearth, the UK Entertainment Channel;
  • Geoff Kershaw, Channel Green TV;
  • Alan Cummings, Channel 9 TV/UC Business;
  • Marilyn Hyndman, Northern Visions / NvTv;
  • Dave Rushton, Institute of Local Television;
  • Daniel Cass, SIX TV;

Jaqui Devereux, United for Local Television.

The objections from the group echo those made against the BBC’s proposals to expand its local video content, which were rejected by the BBC Trust in November 2008.

The letter says that YouView could “hijack the fledgling local TV market” and calls for a thorough competition investigation of the platform:

Collectively these organisations control nearly three quarters of all television viewing and the entire digital terrestrial TV transmission network.

The BBC and its partners claim that YouView offers a common set of technical standards that will help everyone get the best out of this exciting new world. But it can equally be interpreted as an attempt by some of the biggest players in the business to hijack this fledgling market, impose their own vision of how it will operate and dictate the viewers’ experience.

The joint venture partners will control all aspects of the platform and its operational policies. If any third parties wish to participate, they will have to do so on the terms dictated to them by the UK’s largest free-to-air broadcasters.

Full letter at this link (subscription required)…

paidContent:UK takes a look at why local TV providers should work with YouView…

Headlines and Deadlines: My first death knock

Liverpool Daily Post and Echo digital journalist Alison Gow recalls one of her first “death knocks”:

I saw the boat, and it stopped being a lark. The Double R was a corpse – a beached wreck with her paintwork sandblasted away and holes punched in her keel. She lay, tilted to the side, with the cabin smashed in. That was when I truly understood I was reporting on the aftermath of a tragedy. Someone I vaguely knew had gone out, buttoning his coat against the storm, to secure his boat and means of employment, and he had died an unimaginable death.

Full post on Headlines and Deadlines at this link…

Eastern Daily Press providing content through Foursquare

Thanks to Stephen Keable from the Eastern Daily Press for alerting us to the title’s use of Foursquare after we reported on Metro’s deal with the location-based service.

The EDP already has a Foursquare presence. When users of the service check in to many locations around Norfolk, the EDP provides restaurant reviews, mobile downloads and information on where to buy a copy of the paper locally. It seems there’s only been a couple of check-ins so far, but as if Foursquare user numbers grow the title will already have itself represented on the network.

Let us know if your title is using Foursquare and how in the comments below.

paidContent: Advisory panel preparing report on local TV development

A report on ways to establish new local TV services is due to be delivered to culture secretary Jeremy Hunt by the end of the month, paidContent reports today.

An advisory panel tasked with examining broadcast models has reportedly been sifting through the many submissions on the issue and has also been consulting with local newspaper groups and other organisations.

Quoted in the paidContent report, panel member Claire Enders, founder of Enders Analysis, warned that the group’s proposals will not be “earth-shattering” due to geographical issues.

We are making patient progress, but there are long, intractable issues. We are doing our best to go through all the business models. We are leaving no stone unturned. We are aware of how keen the minister is.

But one of the obvious things about the UK is that our conurbations are not appropriate for local television, they are not big enough. We will get somewhere, which advances the minister’s agenda, but it will not be earth-shattering stuff.

In a speech earlier this year Hunt said the lack of quality local television is “one of the biggest gaps in British broadcasting”.

Ofcom considers removal of regional media ownership restriction

Ofcom is considering a government proposal for further relaxation of regional media ownership rules, which could see the one remaining restriction removed.

According to a report by the Press Association, the regulator is considering a request by the Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport Secretary Jeremy Hunt to look at the effect of removing the last restriction, which prohibits any one body from owning all of the following: local newspapers with more than a 50 per cent market share, a local radio station and the ITV licence for the area.

In its response, Ofcom said local media was facing “significant economic pressure” and removing the remaining restriction “could allow local media greater options to consolidate to respond to these pressures”.

But it added that a “serious consideration” remained that combined ownership could give too much control over the local news agenda to one person or company.

The regulator admitted “it is also worth noting that there is probably a reasonably low risk of the kind of consolidation that the remaining rule protects against actually occurring even if the rule was removed.”