Amid a challenging and rapidly evolving landscape for newspapers, one product consistently stands out as a money maker: the humble special section, sometimes known as advertorial and today even morphing into “audience-driven publications.”
Advertisers like the niche targeting such sections provide, and many products — a wedding book, for example — have a long shelf life that can command rate premiums. Publishers, too, benefit from the combination of higher ad percentages and advertiser-submitted or freelanced copy that results in a lower cost per page than comparable newsroom offerings.
In fact, special sections are a bright spot at many large dailies — so why change anything?
Because there’s more money to be made and more flexibility to be gained.
Newspapers everywhere are trying to figure out how to simultaneously do more with less while facing tremendous market pressure to move resources into new-media projects. Editorial and project-management outsourcing of special sections presents a unique opportunity in this regard:
- It frees up resources; and
- It increases the viability of narrow-market or fast-turnaround projects by reducing cost and increasing scalability.
It is a near-perfect time for partnerships of this sort, and a potentially painlessway to deliver savings
straight to the publication’s bottom line.
West Third Group also manages editorial and design solutions for non-newspaper publications. From a non-profit’s quarterly newsletter to one-off and recurring color magazines, West Third offers solutions that cover design, content and project management.