LION Webinar 11: Local news revenue from email newsletters; Wrap your news business around a profitable email edition

LION member Joe Hyde, publisher of San Angelo Live in Texas, talks about growing readership and revenue through email newsletters

May 2, 2016 by Wendy Cohen


In business, sometimes the answer is staring you in the face.

It's safe to say that a lot of web-based news organizations attempt to chase a 24/7 news cycle simply because they publish on the Internet. This can be problematic for one- or two-person operations and lead to burnout. You can't be a 24-hour news operation by yourself while also maintaining a steady effort to build revenue.

Joe Hyde, Publisher San Angelo LiveMost LION Publishers already include a daily email newsletter in their operations, but how those email publications are positioned within your operation makes all the difference, according to Joe Hyde (at left) of San Angelo Live in Texas. This was the topic of the LION Publishers' 11th Webinar, titled "Local news revenue from email newsletters," which was conducted April 26.

"Email is money," Hyde said as he explained how his company produces a daily email in such a way as to both maximize revenue and, in a nod to legacy news operations, build out a work schedule.

"Websites are your silo of content, and you have a lot of ways to get that content out to people, but your primary goal is always to bring them back to the website," Hyde said. "It's never to have them experience your content on Facebook, or experience your content through Twitter, or experience your content on email. That's the purpose of the email to, number one, drive people to our website. But it also serves a couple of other functions."

On of those functions is in providing a visible value to advertisers – their message is arriving in readers' email boxes as a "push," rather than waiting for them to arrive to see them on the site itself. Hyde says his sponsors appreciate the email because it is a definitive way to see their ad on a daily basis.

Email Strategy:

  • Positioned as "newspaper to your email"
  • Creates lightweight publishing workflow for my company
  • Makes money

Newspaper Email:

  • Newspapers offer information "finality"
  • Newspapers are scheduled events
  • Newspapers are dying
  • The "newspaper need" still exists but it needs a modern delivery method

"We're leveraging stuff the Internet already has, and generating – or positioning – a product using it, that replaces the newspaper," Hyde said.

Company Workflow:

  • The scattered Buzzfeed Internet Wild West
  • No scheduling of epics
  • Epics drive editorial staff
  • Epics drive editing workflows
  • Email is the culmination
  • BUT … it's lightweight

For more, watch the webinar video here. You will need to register with your name and email.

Hyde started with a staff of three, including himself, and now has eight. He can be reached here or on Facebook.

You can reach the author, Doug Hardy, here.

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