SNA Foundation’s ‘innovation mission’ yields 8 lessons

The Suburban Newspaper Association traveled to newsmedia companies in the United States and Canada May 1-6 to learn about new and sustainable business models, revenue growth, digital-first strategies and new content strategies.
The trip’s destinations included Deseret Publishing Company and Deseret Digital, MIT’s Center for Future Civic Media, Journal Register Company and Metroland Media/Torstar Corporation.

Visits to the companies yielded eight lessons, SNA president Nancy Lane told the Blinder Group and SNA’s Revenue Leadership Summit in Chicago today:

1.Intense commitment to ongoing training in all areas of the business.
2.Legacy reps can and should sell digital products (with some exceptions). All companies that were visited believed this and are seeing success with it.
3.Digital-only staff/expertise is required for certain products (some believed that this was true for many digital products, others are not convinced).
4.Community contributor networks add critical value.
5.New content strategies are critical to the digital transformation.
6.Creative combinations/leveraging assets is the next huge revenue opportunity.
7.Create new businesses; don’t try to innovate existing businesses.
8.Bonuses and incentives are important to digital success.

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