Keep Local Journalism Alive and Growing in Portland

June 29, 2018

 

As The Portland Beacon continues to grow, I am at a point where I must find new sources of revenue in order to pay for additional content.  While a mix of advertising and reader contributions is the main source of revenue now, and likely will continue to be moving forward, I am at a unique point where I must look to other sources of revenue in order to continue growing. 

 

Until someone figures out a way to add more hours to a day, I have pretty much maxed out the amount of content I can write myself, and I must pay contributors to write additional content.

 

While I could come up with all sorts of wacky ideas on how to raise a buck, I would rather go directly to you, the reader, and see what ideas interest you most.  Without your support, The Beacon will not grow.  I have no intention of ever making The Beacon a pay to read product, but I am at a point where I need to find other streams of revenue to keep the site alive and growing.  

 

At this time, I ask you to take just three of minutes to take a brief eight question survey to help identify which of the revenue generating ideas listed you would be most interested in supporting.  Please note that these are all ideas at this point, and if fully developed, may end up being slightly different than what is drafted below.  You can access the survey at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/53PKZLF.

 

On the survey, you will be asked how likely you would be to support each of these ideas:

 

Membership Program – This would be very similar to a VIP type club.  For a set price per year or per month, members would receive:

  • Exclusive member only content throughout the year.  Articles or interviews shared only with members, or members would receive prior to being shared with all readers, 

  • One announcement a year (Birthday, anniversary, etc.).

  • A thank you gift (mug with logo, t shirt, bumper sticker, etc.)

  • Special member only offers from local sponsors (free or % off merchandise)

Merchandise Sales – This would basically be a small online gift shop with Portland Beacon merchandise. 

 

Speaker Series – A number of speaking events scheduled throughout the year.  The Beacon would work to attract interesting and/or influential speakers to come and speak to attendees.  Tickets would be sold for these events.

 

Dinner Benefit – A nice dinner with a speaker or speakers where readers would buy tickets.  A portion of each ticket would go to The Beacon. 

 

Daily Deal Website -  This would be a Portland only “Groupon” type website where daily or weekly deals will be sold to readers.  The Beacon would retain a portion of each sale.  This idea would be highly dependent on local businesses participating.   

 

Concerts – A concert or set of concerts held at local venues featuring local or other musical talent. 

 

Buy Local Business Directory – ​A sort of online “Yellow Pages” where local businesses could get listed for a reasonable price. 

 

Quarterly/Special Print Editions – We have been contacted by a printer that can make us printed editions of The Portland Beacon.  This idea would only be cost effective for quarterly, semiannual, or limited-edition type offerings.  It would not be effective for regular printing.   ​

 

If you have another idea, I would love to hear from you.  Please email Jim@theportlandbeacon.com

 

Thank you for your continued support.

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The Portland Beacon is owned and operated by Townsend Small Business Solutions LLC

P.O. Box 331, Portland, MI 48875

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