After I wrote in the last issue about our headlong dive into digital media, I realized that this must have been one of those cases in which the PR side of a longtime professional career might have taken a rather hasty leap over the journalistic side.
For those of us who have worked alongside and between both of those fences—or, more accurately, over the cavernous divide that sometimes can be found between them—we know full well how the lines between two similar vocations can become easily blurred.
Not always by intent, mind you. Rather I think of occasions like this as an occupational hazard instead of a deliberate effort to mislead. After all, as a corporate PR guy for many years, I never set out to write an inaccurate story—just to tell that story from a different, you know, vantage point.
So to suggest there was anything imprecise about my announcement of Wrangler News accelerating its interest in online media, that definitely was not my intent. What it was, however, was the result of a burst of eagerness regarding our plans to move full-speed into an era where news and features more often today are delivered via hand-held cellphone than by hand-held pages of paper and ink.
What all of this introspection leads me to is the realization that my nearly lifelong fascination with newspapers is built on a foundation of—you guessed it—actual newspapers. Not, that is, by newspapers which have never been touched by ink. Not by newspapers that can be crammed onto the glassy screen of a cell phone and tucked into a pants pocket.
To me, a newspaper will always be what the name says it is: News on paper.
When I described my feelings to our editor, Joyce Coronel—who recently finished rearing five young men who were inducted into the digital age long ago—she suggested that maybe I should move out of my PR undergraduate days and actually ask our IT guru, Matt Williams, to provide us with some actual data.
That turned out to be a very good idea. As Matt’s notably efficient record-keeping proved, Wrangler News really is scoring some impressive online stats. For example, in terms of those hotly desired “impressions,” we had 8,800 visitors to our pages in February, with the Freeway Chevrolet ad seen 12,579 times.
Visits to the Wrangler News website increased by 65 percent in January and February. And so on.
“We can safely say, based on the previous two months, there is a tally of at least 10,000 impressions, based on only one 728-by-90 pixel ad. An even greater count is available at www.wranglernews.com/latest-edition.”
I’ve already told you I’m hopelessly stuck in that bygone era where newspapers truly were on paper. However, I can’t help but be impressed by what some of the young people we’re relying on have done so quickly to lead us into the digital future.
Which to most of you already has arrived.
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