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pitching a special section to the business side

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by JD Canon, Aug 1, 2007.

  1. JD Canon

    JD Canon Guest

    from my previous post on prep football special sections...

    yes, the paper i work at has no prep football pullout. never has from what i'm told.

    the excuse i've heard is the ad staff is overworked and overstressed with the current budget situation and ad revenue drops to concern themselves with starting a new project like a football preview section.

    look guys, i didn't say it was my philosophy. it's a problem, and "HAHAHAHAHA.... with a few small a's and h's mixed in, etc." doesn't solve it.

    i've lobbied when i can to implement a special section. i just have so little experience with the business side of it that i have no real effective way to pitch the idea. i don't imagine it would be hard to get advertisers to jump on. all the local schools' programs seem to be packed with ads every year. plus, every other newspaper in the civilized world seems to make it happen no problem.

    and then... i run out of ammo.

    i'm open to any helpful suggestions. and even some HahAhHAhaHAhAHs if it makes you feel smarter than me or anyone else.
  2. DGRollins

    DGRollins Member

    Ethically I'm not sure how much you want to go down this path, but that's your call. It's a slippery slope when editorial people start thinking about ad revenue.

    However, since you seem to be motivated by the opportunity to improve your product...

    I'd start by finding some hard numbers. Approach some other papers that are about your size and serve a similar market. See if they produce a high school preview section and try and get as much information about the profitibility of those sections as possible.

    Take that data and present it to the suits. Get an audience with someone way up the food chain at your paper ("the ad staff are too busy" seems like an excuse that is coming from the ad department. I'm sure the publisher would see things differently).

    In the meantime, make sure your HS football preview stuff for this year is quality (assuming you don't get approval for a section this year). Show them that you need more space and show them that the product you will produce is worth supporting.
  3. Ace

    Ace Well-Known Member

    Some papers sell the bejeebus out of prep sections. Some are woefully ad-free.

    If your ad department is so stressed out about the lack of advertising in the paper that they can't sell ads, I think you've got bigger problems than a prep football section.

    It's probably too late now and I would not be asking for extra, ad-free space, but in the future -- months out -- go to your boss or the ad department head and pitch the idea.
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