Today is World Press Freedom Day. 

Over the past six years we’ve been here with you as the fabric of our industry changed. Nearly all of us at the Hub have been journalists or worked alongside them in a newsroom. We’re here today because we deeply believe in the power of journalism and the need to rebuild it – so newsrooms that inform their communities can thrive and readers have unrestricted access to information they need. 

Since our founding, we’ve helped 70+ newsrooms across the country raise more than $59 million from reader donations. 

If you work in a newsroom and haven’t already asked your readers to support you on this important day we have a free campaign template you can use. 

We look forward to continuing to do our part to build a sustainable future for journalism. 

Stacy Fernández
Marketing & Communications Manager

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May Audience and Membership To-Dos
Tips to help newsrooms run thriving loyalty programs

🍁 It’s not too early to start planning coverage (and maybe a campaign) for the fall elections.  Summer hasn’t even started and we’re already talking about fall, but hear us out. In many places the candidates for the upcoming fall elections have already been decided. Most of us have worked in newsrooms and can recall vivid flashbacks to election season. Our advice: Start planning now so things don’t fall into chaos later. This also gives new readers time to discover you as they start looking for election information. We particularly love seeing newsrooms put out voter guides in the months before the election, like this one from The City  and this one from Montana Free Press.

🤖 ICYMI – Automated emails are a thing of beauty. Here’s why you should start using them. In our latest case study we dive into how #ThisIsTucson’s evergreen newsletter series for new Tusconans, created in partnership with the Hub, became a powerful tool for attracting loyal readers and members. In a recent blog post, we also make the case for the two automated emails every newsroom should have that can generate reader revenue in the background. 

🌷 Did your Spring campaign meet goal? Now that your newsroom’s Spring campaign has wrapped, take some time to analyze your data and check how you’re tracking toward your annual revenue goal. If you’re on target to meet your goal, congratulations! *throws confetti* If your revenue is not quite where you expected it to be, that’s OK – there are other tools at your disposal to get your newsroom where it needs to be. Our suggestions: 

  • Plan a short summer campaign (4-5 emails) around a specific need or goal, like hiring a new reporter or expanding your newsletter offerings. 
  • Send monthly emails highlighting something timely going on in your newsroom or community. These emails should be a mix of campaigning to boost your revenue and thanking readers for their support so you retain the members you already have.
  • Look at how each email performed individually to figure out what resonates (and what doesn’t) for future campaigns. In our newsrooms we’ve found some audiences are more willing to give on a specific day of the week; others are moved by behind-the-scenes emails from reporters, while some want a donation ask that’s short and sweet.  

If you’re a current Hub org, ask your project manager about our campaign debriefs. If you want to explore how the News Revenue Hub’s services and campaign support may be a good fit for your organization, learn more about our work here.