Publishers and CNPA persist, advance despite a rocky year
From the Spring 2021 edition of California Publisher
The cover story in this edition about the effect of COVID-19 on CNPA’s members is a grim reminder of how fragile our profession has become. Once a go-to delivery channel for advertisers, the printed versions of newspapers have lost much of their luster with the emergence of digital technology.
The pandemic put an exclamation point on the trend. Local businesses shut down and their appetite for advertising disappeared. The whole world, it seemed, went remote. Commerce went online, and that’s where marketers went to find and connect with customers.
The shift, as we all know, meant unprecedented decline in print revenue followed by expense reductions that involved staff cuts, fewer editions, smaller geographies and even closures in some cases.
Yet, despite the adversity, our profession stood rock solid in devotion to its journalism. We never relented in pursuit of the truth and, finances be damned, we reported it accurately and with integrity. As a result, communities felt secure knowing that their local newspapers were keeping them informed.
Like all crises, this one also spawned opportunity. Innovation rose to the forefront as a strategy for confronting enterprise threatening events. Publishers intensified their investigations of alternative business models. More