Publishers' Auxiliary Stories

Publishers’ Auxiliary Digital Edition by E-Type Services

The National Newspaper Association, in partnership with E-Type Services, is making Publishers' Auxiliary available in an interactive online version.

Ad Libs: Get prospects involved in your presentations

January 1, 2020

Back in my ad agency days, I remember hearing and reading about the importance of getting prospects involved in sales presentations. At that point in my young career, I had experienced the difficulty of getting — and holding — the other person’s attention in a sales conversation. So I decided to try that strategy in an upcoming sales meeting. 

The prospective client was a residential real estate development company that was considering a new logo and print brand identity. They were testing the waters to see if there were any logo ideas that were better than the design they had been using for years. I had worked with them on a few other projects, so they agreed for me to develop something. 

Sales Advice: Publisher attitudes can hurt their sales effort

January 1, 2020

Publishers face many challenges today that didn’t even exist 10 years ago. But before blaming all your revenue woes on Facebook and Google, you need to ask yourself if you’re managing your salespeople properly. 

This means hiring well-qualified people, getting them out of their comfort zone and creating accountability. Maybe, in the final analysis, it’s not the economy, the competition or the market — maybe it’s you getting in your own way. 

Here are statements from publishers that reveal the weaknesses they need to overcome:

Changing the rules of the employment game

January 1, 2020


Have you ever wondered how employment advertising became an “inside sales” job? Easy — it was almost 100% copy in the “old days.” 

Without internet or fax machines, highly trained “typists” took dictation over the phone and typed out the ad on “scanning” paper on their IBM Selectric typewriters. (Younger readers might want to pull up a Google image.) It was fast and easy. 

Legal Standing: Ads for CBD oil are mailable

January 1, 2020

Gentle Reader,

Can you stand one more column about cannabis ads? The guidance on mailing advertising for such products through USPS is becoming clearer, and I want to revisit this topic once more. 

First, while it is evident that the country is moving toward legalization of marijuana and related products, cannabis remains a controlled substance under federal law. There are fines and potential jail sentences attached to violations of the federal law. Thus, the U.S. Postal Service is compelled to follow the federal law and newspapers using the mail must, as well. Given the penalties, it is worth being careful. 

On the Record: Show the power of your classifieds with these 3 promotions

January 1, 2020

A few years ago, a couple of well-intentioned people started a social media page for local sales. Got old children’s clothing to get rid of? Post it to the site. Got exercise equipment that’s turned into a shirt rack? To the site it goes.

The site grew in popularity. Users of the site liked posting ads for free.

Users of the site, however, need to be aware that they get what they pay for.

News Guru: Millennials of this generation aren’t so different from most of us when we were in our 20s

January 1, 2020

Steve Andrist, executive director of North Dakota Newspaper Association, asked me an interesting question yesterday. It was related to my visit to Bismarck in October to work with a focus group of millennials from throughout the state who met together to spend a good part of a day looking at and discussing newspapers.

Prior to my trip to Bismarck, I did what I often do: I surveyed newspaper readers and non-readers throughout the U.S. and Canada to determine what differences there were, if any, between the general population and millennials related to interest in newspapers. After meeting with the focus group in Bismarck, I met with North Dakota publishers to discuss what we had learned during the day. A week or so later, I wrote a report for NDNA with the findings of the focus group.
Steve’s question yesterday was simple, “Do you have any quick advice on what you’d suggest newspapers do with this information?”

Nebraska Press Association hires executive director

January 1, 2020

Dennis DeRossett, a career newspaper executive with extensive achievements in publishing and press association management, has been appointed as the executive director of the Nebraska Press Association. 

“I am excited to be returning to Nebraska and to be working with such an important organization as the Nebraska Press Association,” said DeRossett. “It is an honor to be selected to succeed Allen Beermann in the leadership role at NPA. I look forward to working with Allen and the entire NPA team through a seamless transition beginning in January.”

Republicans block HR 2382

January 1, 2020

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The days before Congress makes big spending decisions are traditionally the most active for NNA’s Congressional Action Team. That is when House and Senate leadership get serious about packaging bills that are in their queue into one giant measure for an up-or-down vote. 

It is also traditionally when measures that affect the U.S. Postal Service are passed — or not passed. The CAT’s archives in December chalked up one more big effort to improve the odds for maintaining universal service across the United States. But its efforts came to naught as Republicans blocked a bill NNA had supported. 

Postal Tips: Electronic paid/requester subscriptions can count as valuable add-ons in certain circumstances

January 1, 2020

The ability to count electronic subscriptions on the annual postal Statement of Ownership, Management and Circulation, PS Form 3526, has been established since 2012. I have not revisited the subject since then, when a third page was added to the form to make counting possible. 

Newspapers selling e-subs, as commonly abbreviated, wanted to be able to count them on their sworn statement as legitimate proof to advertisers of the additional circulation. NNA worked for three years through various channels to make it happen. 

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