Skip to content Skip to footer

Beyond the Paywall: Your April membership and audience to-dos

Last time you heard from us we announced the Hub would co-host the inaugural Independent News Sustainability Summit from October 27-29. Now we’re excited to share this will be an in-person event in Austin, TX.

Sign up to be notified once registration is live.

We want to acknowledge two things. One, we’re still in the midst of a pandemic and understand that everyone has different comfort levels with attending an in-person gathering in Austin or elsewhere at this moment in time. We will use The Texas Tribune’s office policy, local case counts and the City of Austin’s policy to inform our own COVID protections. Attendees will be required to show proof of vaccination and booster. We will decide closer to the event date whether masks will be required.

Second, since deciding to host in Austin, the Texas governor proposed a policy discriminating against trans youth and their parents by equating access to essential gender-affirming healthcare as child abuse. This event is designed to focus on how to preserve and sustain public service journalism, the type of reporting that holds leaders accountable and shines a light on discriminative policies and legislation. 

The News Revenue Hub is against discrimination of LGBTQ+ people. We will work together to ensure this conference — and any Hub event — is a safe and welcoming space for LGBTQ+ attendees.

If you have any questions or suggestions, please reach out to our Chief Executive Officer, Mary Walter-Brown at [email protected].

Let’s work together to create an event that helps our industry sustain journalism during this critical time.


Stacy Fernández
Marketing & Communications Manager

April Audience and Membership To-Dos

🌼 Spring campaign time is here! By now you should have decided (or at least begun) setting your campaign goals, overall theme and created a roadmap that includes email dates, authors and language for CTAs (calls to action). Make sure to review who you plan to send emails to and diversify the segmentation — it can wear down potential donors if you hit the same group over and over again. We recommend writing at least one email specifically to lapsed donors (those who gave over a year ago but haven’t given since then). Lots of lapses occur in the spring since so many people became members in the Spring of 2020 to support pandemic coverage.

🧼 Spring clean more than just your living space. Cleaning your email list — aka purging all the stale contacts — is one of the most reliable ways to proportionally improve your overall open rate. You can go one of two ways: remove stale contacts without letting them know or give them a chance to stay in your list via a series of re-engagement emails. We think the former option is the way to go. In our experience re-engagement campaigns require a lot of effort and get few responses. As long as you protect your donors (both past and present) from the clean, you’re good to go.

🌖 The first quarter of the year just wrapped, how did your newsroom do? If you haven’t done your quarterly check in, there’s still time. Don’t get too worried if you’re not tracking towards your membership goal right now. After a robust end-of-year campaign, the beginning of the year tends to be the slowest — many people recently donated, plus your Spring Campaign is likely your organization’s first true ask of the year. Instead, look most closely at your audience goals: what strategies are (and aren’t) pushing you forward, reassess your goals (it’s normal for them to evolve) and if there’s a goal you’re proud of, recognize it and celebrate.

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.

There’s still time to apply for the $20k Sustainable Publishing Solutions grant. Deadline is Apr. 10!

Have you applied for the Sustainable Publishing Solutions (SPS) grant?

This opportunity, — funded by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation — will give 25 nonprofit newsrooms and newsrooms that serve underrepresented communities a one-time grant of $20,000 to use towards the adoption or management of a Content Management System (CMS) of their choice.

For more information and resources including how to apply, access to related webinars and examples of what goes into a winning application, visit our website. 


Continue Reading