Innovation

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The Local Innovation channel chronicles the efforts of media organizations to make the transition to sustainable digital publishing.

Here's where you'll read stories about the transformation of local and regional journalism, learn more about our teaching in the Poynter Local News Innovation Program, and join the conversation in our newsletter, Local Edition.

The Local News Innovation channel is supported in part by a grant from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation as part of the Knight-Lenfest Newsroom Initiative.

Poynter Results

  • Innovation

    Article

    Five lessons learned about the drone part of drone journalism

    The Missouri Drone Journalism Program has flown more than 450 sorties since December. Our drones have spent more than 38 hours in the air. We’ve had 32 different student pilots fly our drones, and they’ve flown our drones for more than 38 miles. In that time, we’ve had no serious incidents. In fact, our most serious incident was two broken propellers.

  • Innovation

    Article

    5 ways these small newsrooms did big projects

    I got one angry email about this series. It said, basically, that none of this is saving any newspaper jobs. That’s fair. It’s not. But the purpose of this series wasn’t to save jobs.

    It was, instead, to highlight what’s possible in spite of all of the forces working against local journalism. We’ve been over those forces before and will continue as long as they exist.

    But. But. But.

    Look at what’s possible for staffs of 60, 30, 10, four and one.

  • Innovation

    Article

    5 ways your small newsroom can make big projects manageable

    What are some of your favorite pieces of journalism right now? Maybe they're interactives, longform narratives, investigations, stunning photojournalism, immersive podcasts, critical breaking news or revelatory documentaries.

    Now, how many of those are from local newsrooms? 

  • Innovation

    Article

    This 18-year-old asked for an AJC subscription for Christmas

    Jonathan O’Brien’s media habits probably aren’t that typical for 18-year-old recent high school grads.

    He starts his day catching up on local news with Atlanta’s WSB radio station. Then he reads CNN, Politico and Fox News.

    “I like to read a little bit of everything,” he said.

    Oh, and he’s a digital subscriber to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, which he reads every morning. He loves the politics coverage.

    “I think it might have been a Christmas present,” he said.

  • Innovation

    Article

    Here’s how the subscriber funnel, or whatever you want to call it, works

    Last week we introduced several alternatives to the funnel, the concept of turning casual audiences into loyal ones (aka members or subscribers, who support the survival of the journalism.)

    A lot of you liked the waterslide/waterpark concept. It shows there are different paths with one goal — retention.

    Gwen Vargo, director of reader revenue at the American Press Institute, doesn’t have a better term. But like a lot of people, she’s not crazy about “funnel.”

  • Innovation

    Article

    How the NYT chose 'parenting'

    Cooking made sense. Crosswords were easy.

    But how did The New York Times decide on parenting, announced Tuesday as its third standalone product?

    An editorial and product team looked at 15 or 20 areas through the fall. It settled on one, which was accepted by senior leadership in January, and the team began hiring in February, said Alex MacCallum, head of new product and ventures, in an interview.

  • Innovation

    Article

    Is funnel even the right concept for building audiences?

    People have a lot of feelings about funnels.

    I intended to spend this week breaking down the concept of the subscriber funnel and what jobs and tasks go into it.

    But you all presented a lot of alternatives, so this week, we’re going to spend a bit more time there first.

  • Innovation

    Article

    Oh, so that's what a funnel is

    What do you think of when you hear the word “funnel?” Before I became a media reporter, I thought of the Tin Man’s hat from “Wizard of Oz.” Or those delicious cakes dusted in powdered sugar at the fair.

    Now, I think of this concept that’s becoming pretty popular in newsrooms that are trying to better understand and attract audiences. Maybe you remember hearing about the funnel with that buzzword-packed Tronc video from a few years ago.

 
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