Ads 468x60px



A Small-Town Newspaper and the Polarization of Readers

I live in a small town and have to put up with a small-town newspaper.  I know that if I want real news of what's going on in the world I can't rely on The Post Register at all, but they still amuse me from time to time.

For being an unbiased, impartial newspaper, you'd be amazed how many religious-based articles there are.  Since this is an LDS-heavy area, they cater to Mormons even more than the Salt Lake Tribune does.

For example, the Post Register's Facebook page has 2 of their 4 most recent posts about Mormons.  One is talking about the Mormon Tabernacle Choir trying to reach out to the masses, and the other discusses how popular BYU-Idaho is getting.

The SLC tribune is much less Mormon-centric, even though the world sees Salt Lake as the Mormon-Mecca.  Their #6 most recent facebook article talks about Mitt Romney's representation of the LDS Church, and then you'd have to scroll through about 2 weeks worth of posts before finding something else religious.

So when I saw this comment-and-exchange between a reader and The PR on Facebook, I wasn't that shocked...  These are the comments about the Mormon Tabernacle Choir trying to become more mainstream:

I laughed.  Especially with the 'half our readers' quip from the newspaper.  On their website, they boast  a daily print circulation of about 22,000, targeting an area of over 230,000.  That's a 9.56% reach.

Comparatively, The Los Angeles times has about 53%.  The St. Louis Post-Dispatch boasts a 57% reach.  Granted, those are both major metropolitan areas, but the greater Billings area compares to Eastern Idaho (population-wise), and the Billings Gazette has a 42% reach.

I know print is slowly dying, but The Post Register seems bent on helping it croak.  A yearly subscription would cost me about $3.35 a week, yet I could get the Los Angeles Times for about $2 a week.  Sense?  This makes none...

The comment above shows that by catering to one demographic, they're risking alienating everyone else in the process.  If half of your subscribers (11,000... ha) are LDS, ok.  I'm sure they want to know what's happening around the world as well, instead of what's going on in their own church.

I have news for you, Post Register.  They (Mormons) talk about themselves enough as it is.  They probably knew about the things you report on before you report on it...  Non-mormons don't care about the goings-on of the church, so you're essentially preaching to the choir (pardon the pun).

Even if you take away the Mormon-centric philosophy, the paper seems to have troubles with fundamentals as well:

Granted, I used to play 'Paperboy' on my Nintendo in the 80's.  I know how hard it is to throw the paper just right without breaking a window or getting chased by an old lady.  But still, if you have a Facebook be prepared to communicate and engage with Facebook.  "You should have called us" and "email was lost in the ether" are lame excuses, and I am glad you were called-out on it in a semi-public setting.

Do you come from a small town?  If so, do you have a newspaper as skewed and out of touch as this one?  Please share your stories below.  With luck, someone from the Post Register will read this and learn something...  (and, with luck, hire a new Marketing/PR Director)
Please Share it! :)

0 witty retorts:

Post a Comment

Comments are always appreciated. Sometimes they end up being better than the initial post! Come join in on the fun... (and remember, you can post anonymously)

And if you like the post, feel free to share! Stumble, Digg, Tweet, go bananas!