LMC and LMA Announce Second Phase of The Branded Content Project and Local News Resource Center
Updated: Dec 22, 2020
New York, Sept. 15, 2020 – The Local Media Consortium and the Local Media Association, two of the local media industry’s most innovative organizations, today announced additional funding from the Facebook Journalism Project that will build the next phase of The Branded Content Project, as well as continue supporting the Local News Resource Center.
The Branded Content Project will create long term, high margin, high impact, sustainable revenue and content opportunities for local media organizations of all shapes and sizes. The first phase of The Branded Content Project – which was funded by a $1M investment from the Facebook Journalism Project – provided local media organizations the opportunity to define, develop and grow branded content revenue strategies. Launched in March 2019, it reached thousands of industry leaders, executives, sales reps, content creators and marketers. During the first 18 months of the project, 35 media participants generated over $24M in local revenue.
The next phase of the project will build on the lessons learned from the original project’s training and mentorship program, and offer shared services, tools and technology to media organizations interested in creating or growing a branded content business. The Branded Content Project is a full-service branded content product development, content creation, education, distribution and monetization resource for local publishers. News organizations can learn more by visiting brandedcontentproject.com.
“We are excited to announce phase two of The Branded Content Project, which will help local media companies access important content opportunities and resources to increase their revenue, enhance their knowledge and grow a more successful branded content business,” said Fran Wills, CEO of the LMC. “We are grateful to Facebook for their partnership in helping local media continue to build new sustainable revenue streams.”
The Branded Content Project will provide centralized sales training and support to help local news businesses build capacity faster and open up new revenue streams. The project will offer LMC and LMA members access to workshops and training, sales support and audience products, including four core 52-week digital lifestyle series. Additional content products and services, a volunteerism series and cause marketing platform, video and audio services, distribution assistance, creative services, and other custom opportunities will also be available to all local news organizations through an e-commerce platform launching later this Fall.
The Local News Resource Center is also being funded through 2022. Since its inception in 2018, the center has supported local newsrooms with individualized social media training, troubleshooting, and strategies built on data-backed industry best practices for digital audience engagement and development.
“These two initiatives have helped hundreds of local media companies over the past two years,” said Nancy Lane, chief executive officer of LMA. “We are thrilled that the Facebook Journalism Project is not only renewing their investment in these programs, but doubling down.”
"We are excited to partner with the LMC and the LMA on these two initiatives,” said Facebook's Jason White, Director of News Partnerships. “It is our hope that these programs will provide local media companies with greater access to resources that will help them continue to succeed and grow.”
About the Local Media Consortium
The Local Media Consortium delivers economic value through strategic partnerships on behalf of over 90 local media companies in top markets across the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico, and includes more than 4,000 outlets. The LMC delivers over $50M in annual financial benefit to its members by harnessing their combined volume and scale to reduce costs and increase revenue with technology and service providers like Google, Facebook, Monster and others. According to ComScore, the aggregated LMC audience footprint spans 212 million monthly unique visitors and reaches 80% of the U.S. online audience. More information is available at http://www.localmediaconsortium.com/.
About Local Media Association
Local Media Association (https://www.localmedia.org/) is a thriving and innovative organization that is intensely focused on discovering new and sustainable business models that will support local news. LMA's innovation engine, Accelerate Local, launched six initiatives in 2019 with 50 different media partners including a digital transformation lab for black publishers. Three new projects have been launched so far in 2020, including the COVID-19 local news fund, and two news collaboratives - the Oklahoma Media Center and a yet-to-be-named effort in Chicago. Local Media Foundation is the association's 501(c)(3) charitable trust that supports the essential role of local news and information in a healthy democracy.
About the Facebook Journalism Project
Created in January 2017, the Facebook Journalism Project (FJP) exists to establish stronger ties between Facebook and the news industry. FJP works to ensure quality journalism thrives by unlocking and adding value through new products, partnerships with the news industry and specific FJP programs. FJP works in three ways: collaborative development of new products; providing tools and trainings for journalists; and providing tools and trainings for people. www.facebookjournalismproject.com
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