Michele's List
Building blocks in the emerging local news ecosystem

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Statistics
Site Twitter handle

@NewCanaanite

Facebook link

https://www.facebook.com/newcanaanite

Year launched

2014

Tax status

  • Sole proprietor/no specific tax status

Monthly visitors

28,000

Revenue

  • $51,000 -€“ 100,000

Primary revenue sources (50% or more)

  • Local advertising

Secondary revenue sources (20-49%)

  • None at this level

Smaller revenue sources (less than 20%)

  • None at this level (less than 20%)

Publishing platform

  • WordPress

Mobile

57% mobile (three-quarters of that smartphones)

E-newsletter

  • Yes

E-newsletter subscribers

1,100

Is your site indexed on Google News?

  • Yes

Other products

We host many of Broadstreet's dynamic ad formats (as opposed to "traditional Web display"

City

New Canaan

State

Connecticut

Last Publisher Update

  • 2016-03-12 00:37:33 UTC

New Canaanite
New Canaan, Connecticut
Michael Dinan

New Canaanite is a local news webiste that covers and provides in-depth reporting in a town of 20,000 in Connecticut. The site was founded in 2014 by Michael Dinan, who previously oversaw coverage for 48 news sites in Fairfield County, Conn. and Westchester County, N.Y. as a senior regional editor for Patch.com. Dinan has reported the site receives 28,000+ monthly unique visitors and 100,000+ monthly page views. Revenue: Advertising.

Introduction by publisher

I purchased the URL NewCanaanite.com and launched it two days after Patch.com was sold in January 2014 and laid off nearly all of its editorial staff. My goal is to cover quality-of-life matters for residents of New Canaan, Conn.—traffic, parking, local history, the downtown, pets, public parks, schools and youth sports. We run on the Blargo Wordpress theme from Broadstreet, which includes an ad server and multiple ad formats. Successes include achieving profitability within the first year, and building a solid advertising revenue business. Love what I do.

Effective engagement practice

Daily newsletter (via Mailchimp). We are up to 1,110 subscribers on our M-F newsletter and the open rate is 66.6%, click thru rate 31.5%. The average for Media & Publishing for those same numbers is 17.5% and 3.8%.

Business challenge

Figuring out exclusivity rates is difficult, and it's a difficult conversation both with the current advertiser who wants to lock it down, and the prospective advertiser who may need to hear "Not now."

Coverage area

  • Suburb

Mission

  • Other

Other mission

Cover quality-of-life matters in a local voice and with a local sensibility.

Topics of coverage

  • Government & politics
  • Planning & development
  • Other

Other content topics

Local history, traffic, pets/wildlife and parking.

Watchdog

  • Yes, occasional

Institutional partners

  • Library
  • Other

Other institutional partners

We partner all the time with the Chamber of Commerce, local nonprofit organizations (arts centers, human services agencies).

Content contributors

  • Professional journalists
  • Students

Contributor compensation

  • Full-time, paid staff
  • Interns who are paid

Revenue-side compensation

  • Full-time, paid staff without commission

Publish donors

  • Do not publish names of donors or foundations

In the news

Three articles since last June:

Grown from Patch: A crop of new hyperlocal news sites has sprung up from AOL’s failed platform (Nieman Lab): http://www.niemanlab.org/2015/11/grown-from-patch-a-crop-of-new-hyperlocal-news-sites-has-sprung-up-from-aols-failed-platform/

Who’s Making Money—and Who Isn’t—in Local Online News? (Nieman): http://www.niemanlab.org/2015/07/whos-making-money-and-who-isnt-in-local-online-news/?utm_source=Daily+Lab+email+list&utm_campaign=7ef271c041-dailylabemail3&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_d68264fd5e-7ef271c041-395922073

7 Ways Local News Sites Can Grow Their Digital Audiences (Street Fight Mag): http://streetfightmag.com/2015/06/04/7-ways-local-news-sites-can-grow-their-digital-audiences/