Roman Gallo, director of media strategies, PPF, explained how his hyperlocal weekly papers, websites, and newsroom cafes have directly affected the monetization of media content.
When Nase Adresa introduced its pilot hyperlocal program six months ago, the company chose four of the fourteen regions in the Czech Republic in which to launch three hyperlocal weeklies, five websites, and a specialized newsroom café in the Kroměříž district.
The print weeklies are created in part by the editors with direct involvement from the local communities and suggestions given at the cafés. Gallo said that people are able to walk directly into a café and work alongside the news staff to contribute ideas.
He said that printing dailies on Monday morning enables them to be the first medium in the Czech Republic to bring the people the news on popular topics like football.
They decided against mimicking the classic newsroom and instead built a newsroom café where the people can have direct contact with journalists and editors while enjoying the same amenities of a normal café . The café also offers entertainment to increase community involvement. The sales from the café are able to pay for rent and expenses, 25 to 35 percent of which go directly towards the centralized newsroom, said Gallo.
He said it's difficult to find the right people for this project because the café's interactive environment asks more from journalists and editors. Not only do the editors oversee newsroom operations, they must also work directly with readers.
"I think it's exactly the kind of project we need," said WEF director Bertrand Pecquerie.
After receiving promising pilot results, Nasa Adresa will build 150 weeklies, 1,000 websites, and 90 cafés across the entire Czech Republic but he'll need about 800 journalist to do so. Roman Gallo said that by the end of 2011 Nasa Adresa will be the Czech Republic's strongest medium.
He jokingly said, "We will be bigger than McDonald's, in Czech Republic."