Earlier this month, the Los Angeles Times reported on the shuttering of a chain of Eastside community newspapers. One article even went so far as to say, “Local and regional newspapers that serve Southern California are going through tough times, leading some to question whether traditional newspapers can survive.” Radio has always been there – now it is even more valuable! The importance of local radio to the local community can’t be understated.
The challenge for local Newspapers has been how to sustain a newsroom and make a profit when print advertising is fleeing to lower-cost space on the Internet. Most digital ads are concentrated on Facebook and Google, not newspaper websites. These two Internet giants take in 60 percent of online ad revenues.
Radio was shown as the most trusted platform used after the impact of hearing about “fake news” in political coverage. See below for the Kantar “Trust in News” study where it was revealed ‘mainstream news media’s’ reputation remained largely intact while social media and digital-only news platforms sustained major reputation damage. In addition, Facebook and other digital platforms are not designed to promote civic connection, but rather communities of interest often unmoored from particular geographies.