Monday, February 2, 2009

Modern media cope with recession's daily woes

But there, stripped across the bottom of the page, was another story - a message that began "Dear Business Community." The letter from Jill Stravolemos, the Camera's vice president of advertising and marketing, amounted to an ad for space available in the newspaper.

"Company closings, layoffs, bankruptcy and slumping sales make headlines every day," the letter began. "All of us here at the Camera have been wondering what we can do to generate happier news for the businesses and people of our community. How can we help?"

How about by cutting ad rates to a quarter of what the Camera usually charges one-time advertisers? That's what the letter promised, with full-page ads available on a "first-come, first-served basis" for $1,000. Concluding her message, Stravolemos wrote, "Recession-proof your business. Boost your image. Get people in your door. Let us help you."

Any observer of the newspaper business during the latter part of 2008 saw what led the Camera to take such an extraordinary measure as a sales front-page pitch.

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