TAP into Westfield is an independently-owned local news site operating as a franchisee in the TAPinto.net network. Launched as The Alternative Press in 2008, the network shifted to a franchise model with independent ownership in 2013-14 and re-branded as TAPinto. The network provides franchisees with tech support, regional ad sales, editorial guidelines and business training in exchange for an annual fee. Revenue: Advertising.
I came to TAP into (then called The Alternative Press) several years ago as a freelance reporter and soon bought the Westfield site. My mission is to provide unbiased hyperlocal news coverage to the community. Challenges (largely overcome) included gaining readership and making money. Today, I believe TAP into Westfield reaches the majority of households in Westfield and brings in a healthy revenue.
We have more than 4,000 Facebook followers. I also personally interact with people in the community a great deal.
I'm running out of some ad spaces.
A story will be published shortly in the Columbia Journalism Review.