Business information written specifically for newspaper advertising departments

The Colorado Springs Gazette launched the SpringsMilitaryLife.com in late 2010. This niche website is aimed at the Springs’ military audience — primarily the spouses of the enlisted men and women of the army.

Creating bridal bliss is no easy feat these days. For a couple embarking on what is supposed to be the best day of their lives, the build-up for D-Day is nearly always a constant stress. There’s reserving the venue and booking the florist, you must find the dress and meet with the photographer, cake maker and caterer. Not to mention finding the hair stylist, jeweler and bartender. Weddings require attention to detail and extensive time management. If only there were a source to help brides-to-be find all of the information they’d need, and more. If only your newspaper could provide those some 2.3 million brides a relief from the folly.

Memorial Day is a time for remembering. Beginning in the early 20th century, the day originated as a ritual of remembrance after the Civil War. While the true meaning of Memorial Day is to honor fallen U.S. soldiers, today it is more recognized as an occasion for the expression of memory in general. This long weekend has become increasingly community oriented and focused on family get-togethers, barbecues, shopping, vacations and even the Indianapolis 500.

Earth Day once embraced a strong anti-business and consumerism sentiment. In fact, the first Earth Day organizers refused any financial support from corporations and held teach-ins to challenge and educate corporate and government leaders. But now, over 40 years later, it has been adopted by marketing teams across the nation. With the eco-conscious trend in full swing, April has become a time when people aspire to embrace a more environmentally friendly lifestyle. So what better time to run a special section centered around everything green in your community that showcases local businesses, products and activities.

Traditionally seen as merely a day of indulgence for those claiming any sort of Irish heritage, St. Patrick’s Day is exuberant, lucious and full of potential for your classified revenue. There are so many opportunities to expand and create new revenue for your newspaper this March, one of the most effective being a pub crawl directory. 

In February, it seems as though cupid has hit every man and woman on the street. As you watch them go merrily down the frosty roads, hand-in-hand, you can’t help but feel the spirit of St. Valentine. Put those feel-good feelings to use and create a classified event for those happy couples that are ready to tie the knot.

In loving memory of those near and dear to our hearts; families of loved ones lost are, for lack of better words, lost. Help guide both the funeral homes and the distraught family members through this trivial time when they sit down to write the obituary.

Recently, newspapers have been finding their readers are straying from local media outlets. But why? Why would the community prefer to read magazines or go online to find their news? Because, these media outlets are specific. So what can newspapers do to begin to drive traffic back local? Become specific. Produce a niche publication in the advertising department; sell advertising, advertorials and involve the editorial department to create high-quality content with concentration on specific verticals, like traveling or home staging for real estate agents and individuals trying to sell a home.

Real estate advertising often gets caught up in one category — homes for sale — which neglects the numerous other avenues that are out there. Consider focusing in on an oft-neglected audience and widen your advertising possibilities. One example of a niche market that sees little attention is homebuilders.

Niche Publications are growing trends in both print and online advertising.  I’m a strong believer in niches, especially for sales.  Look at Amazon, they have become a household name and carry a warehouse full of inventory.  But in the beginning, they had books.  That’s all, only books.  That was their niche. They grew because they had a solid group of followers that were interested in books. They found out what more their clients wanted, and slowly added movies, art, music, games, electronics and so on. They were specific and customer driven. So how does this translate to a newspaper sales staff? It’s all about how you approach your clients.  Find your niche in the classified world.