With over 1.4 million social media fans, 30A (www.30A.com) covers life in small beach towns along Florida's Gulf Coast. The brand is inspired by a beach-front road named "Scenic Highway 30-A" that runs across the region. In addition to 30A.com, there are also free 30A iOS and Android apps, a 24/7 digital radio station (www.30Aradio.com), a local real estate site (www.30Arealestate.com) and an e-commerce platform (www.30Agear.com). Key metrics cover multiple 30A platforms.
Santa Rosa Beach
Florida's northwestern Gulf Coast
15,000 full-time residents; 4 million annual visitors
We use our social media platforms (1.26 million Facebook fans; 126,000 Instagram followers; etc.) to drive traffic directly to our feature articles on www.30A.com and to various destinations across our digital network.
We're hitting some revenue ceilings on ad banners and sponsorship opportunities, so we continue to think creatively to establish new monetization opportunities, including e-commerce and licensing.
"Local independent news publisher Mike Ragsdale has strong, iconoclastic opinions about the direction of his industry. The founder of 30A, which he started in 2007 'with virtually nothing' to cover the dozen small resort towns and developments of Santa Rosa Beach on the Florida Panhandle’s Gulf Coast, says local news continues to struggle because it too often ignores what it claims to do: put community first."
In 2017, 30A was invited to speak at the "3D Journalism" conference, Russia’s largest forum for journalists and media professionals. Here is 30A Founder Mike Ragsdale's interview with Russia's largest radio network: https://www.facebook.com/echomsk.ru/videos/1594366687259001/
“30A is a brand that celebrates small town beach life along Florida’s Gulf Coast. 30A has 900,000 Facebook fans and its inspiring videos, photos and stories reach millions of beach lovers every week. ”
"I confess I hadn’t heard of 30A, a site all about the beach lifestyle along Scenic Highway 30-A in the Florida Panhandle. Not exactly an investigative site, to be sure, but a remarkable success nonetheless, one that has expanded into podcasts, retail, online classifieds, and more."
"While Lady Antebellum takes on the duty of being the first artist to perform at the 30A Sessions Concert Series, they open the door for many more musicians to get involved within the coming years."
–Sounds Like Nashville
"For Mike Ragsdale, his 30A.com serving the Gulf Coast beach communities of Santa Rosa in Northwest Florida is much more than a website. It’s an 'international brand' that includes a digital radio station and a retail operation that sells everything from to T-shirts to beach chairs to beer. Ragsdale tells Street Fight how he did it, and how traditional local and hyperlocal news sites can present their communities in new and compelling ways — reaping new revenue."
In 2015, 30A was ranked the #1 Independent News Site in America in a study conducted by The Tow-Knight Center for Entrepreneurial Journalism in New York City.
“You may recognize 30A from the signature blue, white, and yellow stickers stuck on cars across the country, but now you know where the name comes from: East County Highway 30A, also known as Scenic Highway 30A, which stretches down the Florida Panhandle’s Gulf Coast from Grayton Beach to Rosemary Beach, passing through several charming beach communities along the way.”
30A won Street Fight magazine’s 2018 Local Visionary Award for “Most Innovative Local Media Business Strategy”