Keyword: MEGA
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Gone are the days when publishers can safely depend on local businesses for recurring advertising spends, or someone selling their car would look to the newspaper first. Phil Pracht, product manager of TownNews.com, says; "It's time to confront these issues head-on, and pivot."

During a presentation on the Mega-Conference Solutions Stage in February, Pracht will be talking about local niche guides, which he says "offer an exciting opportunity to take back SMBs in a way that's unique and, more importantly sustainable."

The Mega-Conference will be held Feb. 26-28 in San Diego, Calif.

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Branded content, native advertising and content marketing have had many names. Regardless of what you call it, it's been hailed as a savior to publishers who have relied on the traditional display ad to help fund the journalism that powers their brands.

At the 2018 Mega-Conference, learn why this marketing tactic has grown from practically nothing to a $10B business opportunity in just a few short years, and how local media can and has been leveraging this solution.

Pat Connolly, managing director/digital transformation with Accenture, will lead a breakout session for conference attendees. "In this session," Connolly said, "you will hear about some of the best practices in creating branded content, how publishers have an advantage over mass media companies, how to make it work through new distribution and commercial models, and how you should structure your teams to provide this important service."

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The entrepreneurs of media today will discuss the NexGen Business Models for Media at the 2018 Mega-Conference, set for Feb. 26-28 in San Diego. During this session, learn how they have answered the challenge of making money in today's media landscape.

Panelists will be:

  • Evan Smith, CEO, The Texas Tribune, Austin, Texas
  • Jim Brady, founder and CEO, Spirited Media, Great Falls, Va.
  • Sara Fischer, media reporter, Axios, Arlington, Va.

"It's a myth," Smith said, "that nonprofit news orgs can't be sustainable – we've proved that it's possible not only to survive but thrive for eight years-plus. A diverse set of revenue streams – a mix of major and member giving, foundation support, corporate underwriting, events sponsorship and earned income – funds our award-winning accountability journalism and allows us to maintain the largest newsroom covering a state capitol in the country. This model is a winner for us and can be scaled up or down to succeed elsewhere. I'm eager to tell all."

"If recent times have taught us anything," says Brady, "it's that media cannot make it on advertising alone, and that finding diverse revenue streams is necessary for survival. Hopefully, those of us on this panel can give some actionable information for those looking to expand into events, memberships and subscriptions."

Fischer will deliver a deep dive into the evolving trends reshaping the digital media – covering new media technology, industry IPOs and acquisitions, emerging user behaviors and the policy fault lines in between. Aside from her weekly newsletter, Fischer gives customized presentations about trends shaping the media landscape for an array of audiences that include corporate executives, Wall Street analysts, foreign policy professionals and journalists.

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Learn about TEAM DISCOUNTS for newspapers that bring more than one person to the conference. more

Looking for a unique solution to a circulation dilemma at your newspaper, or wanting to connect better with your readers? How about just make a little extra cash (who doesn't want that)? During a presentation on the Mega-Conference Solutions Stage in February, discover how your newspaper can problem solve and drive revenue using AMG|Parade's Athlon Sports newsstand annuals.

The Mega-Conference will be held Feb. 26-28 in San Diego, Calif.

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Navigating the digital revolution can feel like sailing through uncharted – and sometimes stormy – waters. Finding the time, knowledge base, skill set and resources to support a much broader spectrum of marketing channels for your customers is, and can be prohibitive for many.

"Over the past decade, a rapid evolution in technology has caused immense change in consumer behavior, requiring media outlets to not only maintain traditional marketing channels, but add new ones at an ever-increasing pace," says Laura Cole, vice president of marketing for Vivial.

During a presentation on the Solutions Stage at the Mega-Conference, she will show "how adding a great marketing platform to an existing product portfolio will provide a way to protect and generate revenue, and ultimately rock the digital revolution."

The Mega-Conference will be held Feb. 26-28 in San Diego, Calif.

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"Fake news" can impact the world of real news. During the 2018 Mega-Conference, hear how publishers have reacted to instances of "fake news" in their communities, as well as accusations that their real news is "fake."

The Mega-Conference will be held Feb. 26-28 in San Diego, Calif.

David Chavern, president and chief executive officer of the News Media Alliance, will be joined for this presentation by Travis Quast, publisher of the Twin Falls (Idaho) Times-News, and Tom Rosenstiel, executive director of The American Press Institute.

"Publishers are in the real news business," Chavern said, "but that doesn't mean they aren't impacted by the fake stuff."

He said, "There have been a number of unfortunate instances where communities have been torn apart by bad facts, and the local newspaper was called upon to react and pick up the pieces. In many other cases, publishers are barraged by accusations that their journalism is fake," he said.

Quast has first-hand knowledge of the impact that these situations can cause in a local community. The New York Times Magazine ran an article in September about exaggerated reports of a juvenile sex crime that brought a media maelstrom to Twin Falls, during the height of the 2016 elections. READ MORE

Rosenstiel says: "Battling misinformation and fake news involves having a continuing conversation with readers. To do it well, you need to know what people in your community are saying – what information they are talking about, wondering about and even sharing – that is erroneous and that you can correct for them."

Chavern said the panel will explore how real publishers have reacted to challenges and give attendees tools for coping in the future.

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Learn about TEAM DISCOUNTS for newspapers that bring more than one person to the conference. more

A case study will be presented on the Solutions Stage at the 2018 Mega-Conference showing how the Star Tribune Vacation & Travel Experience in Minneapolis optimized its marketing initiatives to drive success in the development and execution of events, a crucial source of revenue diversification.

The Mega-Conference will be held Feb. 26-28 in San Diego, Calif.

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News organizations of all sizes are committed to growing their trusted relationship with readers. During the 2018 Mega-Conference, hear how Nextdoor, the world's leading social network for neighbors, connects newspapers to specific neighborhoods and communities in an unprecedented fashion.

The Mega-Conference will be held Feb. 26-28 in San Diego, Calif.

Together with Matthew Hall from The San Diego Union-Tribune, Nextdoor's Vice President of Communications and Policy, Steve Wymer, will discuss how news organizations are leveraging the neighborhood network to source hyper-local content, extrapolate neighborhood-specific polling data and reaction, and engage the community in a more personal way than ever before.

The Mega-Conference will be held Feb. 26-28 in San Diego, Calif.

Register for the Mega-Conference

Learn about TEAM DISCOUNTS for newspapers that bring more than one person to the conference. more

Michael Wilhite, vice president of data strategy for the analytics arm of Kroger, called 84.51°, will outline at the 2018 Mega-Conference how newspapers and consumer packaged goods companies should use personalization to create new, productive business relationships that go beyond current advertising and inserts.

The Mega-Conference will be held Feb. 26-28 in San Diego, Calif.

Register for the Mega-Conference.

Learn about TEAM DISCOUNTS for newspapers that bring more than one person to the conference. more

We want you to nominate your newspaper for consideration in this year's Mega-Conference Innovation Award. Don't think you can't compete with the large metros? In 2016, the winner was a three-day-a-week paper. This award is designed to recognize innovative achievements made by newspapers of all sizes. more
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