Good News is coming to Darlington County!
By Jana E. Pye, Editor, email@example.com
We are excited to share the Good News of Darlington County here at the News and Press! Our new website is set to launch on May 1st, and will include enhanced news coverage and photographs not found in the print edition, opportunities to interact and share news and comments via monitored social media, and the entire paper in a PDF version.
“We are recognized as a newspaper of excellence in the South Carolina Press Association (SCPA),” said publisher Morrey Thomas, who recently ended his year as the SCPA President. “We have a distinct responsibility to our readers to be ‘government watch dogs’ in a sense. The very presence of the press alone holds elected officials accountable – if readers cannot attend meetings themselves, we will report for them.”
It has long been the tradition for the News and Press to report as the eyes and ears of the community at each municipal meeting in the county, including Darlington County Council, Darlington County Board of Education, Town of Lamar, Town of Society Hill, City of Darlington and City of Hartsville.
There may be a time in the future when everyone receives his or her newspaper in a digital fashion, and we recognize that. In the meantime, we realize that we serve a variety of readers who still enjoy the feel of paper, and the ability to clip out a story or photo to place in a scrapbook or on their refrigerator. This is something that is uniquely personal to small communities like ours here in Darlington County.
We want to make the experience of sharing the good news in our area accessible in as many ways as we can. We are a small staff that cares deeply about our readers as fellow residents and friends, not numbers on a Nielsen rating poll by corporations that don’t know a thing about sweet tea and boiled peanuts.
In order to fund the new changes, a modest rate increase will coincide with the launch of the website. It has been nearly fifteen years since the last price increase, when the single copy rate rose from 25 cents to 50 cents. The annual subscription rate has been the exact price of single copy purchasing the paper each week, with a rate of $26 per year. The out of state fee is a bit more for postage rates, at a fee of $36 per year.
The price increase is necessary to remain current; according to Thomas, “We cannot continue to give the good news of Darlington County without a source of revenue. We’ve been holding out on an increase, but we will honor our readers to keep it affordable.”
The price increase will include a special savings for subscribers, free added value E-subscription access– and a “beat the rate increase” period of time ending July 31.
Beginning with the date of the website launch on May 1, the single copy price at racks and newsstands will increase from 50 cents to 75 cents; annually that fee would total $39, but Thomas said that it was important for him to give subscribers a substantial savings over single copy prices.
The new rate will be only $30 in state, and $40 out of state, with free access to the new website, giving the subscriber the added bonus value of the $20 E-subscriber rate.
To thank our faithful readers, Thomas decided to offer a special for new subscribers and existing subscribers to renew in their cycle; from today until July 31st, the rate will remain at $26 per year in state, and $36 out of state. The savings will be 56% value, based on:
$39 single copy cost plus the $20 E-edition value for all access website totaling $59.
After July 31st, rates will change to $30 in state, $40 out of state.
What we need from current subscribers:
Please send us your email address, and we will send you a temporary password to log in and access the new website and E-edition. You will be able to change your password at that time. We will send reminders regarding your subscription renewals to this email address. We value your privacy and will never sell our email list to a third party. All email addresses, and billing information, will remain safe and secure. Send the email address, along with the name, address and telephone number of the subscriber to: firstname.lastname@example.org you may also call Judy at our office at 843-393-6811, or stop by the office weekdays between the hours of 9 – 5:00 p.m. on 117 S. Main Street.
What to expect on May 1: Our new website will be live, at www.NewsAndPress.net and will be visible on all devices including desktop computers, laptops, tablets and smart phones. Subscribers will be provided with a password to sign in to see the entire website. (Reminder: don’t forget to send us your email address!)
New advertising opportunities:
We will have unique and exciting advertising opportunities that will allow readers to click directly to the website of the advertiser. As we have seen in our social media presence on our Facebook page, we have an impressive number of readers and we feel that will transfer and grow even larger with the new website, creating a landing page for advertisers to be seen by a large number of readers in Darlington County. Contact Charlotte Berger at 393-3811 for more information.
We are Darlington County, and so proud to share your good news. Please join us on this new and exciting E- adventure!