🔦 We're planning to launch next week

The Spotlight is coming very, very soon

Hey everybody!

It's Ben this time, publisher of The Spotlight and The Portager. While Tom is busy getting the first stories assigned for our official launch, I wanted to share some updates.

The big news is that we're planning to launch next week. If all goes well, on Tuesday we'll send our first newsletter with news coverage and things to do around Stow, Munroe Falls and Silver Lake.

Reporter Maria McGinnis is all lined up to cover Thursday night's Stow City Council meeting. And reporter Roger Gordon is putting together a high school sports roundup, which is likely to be a recurring feature.

The plan is to publish every Tuesday and Friday, straight to your inbox.

That said, we're always open to changing things up in response to what our readers want. If not enough people upgrade to a paid subscription, we might cut back to one newsletter a week. Conversely, if everybody subscribes and demands daily coverage, you bet we'll crank them out.

At The Portager we found the sweet spot is three days a week, but I think we'll eventually switch to five days, plus a weekly print edition. Our readers want that, too. We're just waiting for the finances to catch up.

These things take time, and our company is less than three years old.

The Spotlight hasn't even hatched, but over 760 people are receiving this email. At the current rate of growth, we'll have over twice that many readers two months from now. It's obvious from your feedback that the community is excited about The Spotlight and hungry for some truly local news.

A quick note for local businesses

Over at The Portager, we make about 80% of our revenue from subscriptions. The other 20% comes from advertising. I have no reason to believe The Spotlight will be any different.

We've already developed two simple ad options. One is a business card-sized ad in the email for $100, and we have an email sponsorship option for $410. The sponsorship is great because it includes a "native ad," which is basically an article that you get to write. (More details here.)

Between now and Aug. 3, we're offering a deal to advertisers who choose to become a launch patron. The deal is you get five of the $100 ads for half off. So it's a $500 value for $250.

By the way, that's the size of the ad. ^

It's a great deal, and I hope some of you take advantage. The support will help fund our school and government coverage, and you'll reach hundreds of the community's most engaged citizens.

Just contact me before Aug. 3 to lock in that price. I'm at [email protected].

We're publishing portraits of the community

Have you seen our new Facebook page?

If you click that link, you'll find a picture of the instructors at LaTuchie Tennis Center. This is the first of a short series we commissioned from photojournalist Jeremy Brown to capture some of the people who make this community such a friendly and vibrant place to live.

If you like our page and share the post, you'll be more likely to see future portraits we publish.

And please feel free to recommend folks who deserve to have their picture in the paper.

See you next week!

Thanks for reading. And as always you can just reply to this email with questions or comments.

Next week it'll be Tom again, but it was great to steal The Spotlight for a minute. (Ha. Ha. Ha.)