Webinar: Inside 3 sustainable hyperlocal news expansions funded by the GNI Innovation Challenge 

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DOWNLOAD THE ARCHIVES: Torstar Local Presentation | Wick NABUR Project Presentation | Crosstown Presentation | Video presentation

Tuesday, Sept. 29, at 11:30 a.m. ET

The first Google News Initiative Innovation Challenge winners in North America are putting funding to work developing sustainable business models, diversifying revenue streams, and increasing audience engagement.

In this series of webinars from Local Media Association and Google News Initiative, grant recipients will provide details of how they approach innovative projects with new ideas in the industry, the success they’ve seen so far, and lessons for other local media.

Inside three sustainable hyperlocal news expansion projects: Crosstown, Torstar Local, and Wick Communications

Leaders from three hyperlocal news projects supported by the GNI Innovation Challenge — Crosstown, Torstar, and Wick Communications — are developing new products and technology to grow relationships with hyperlocal news audiences. Moderated by Benjamin Shaw, manager of Google Innovation Challenges, winners will share what they’ve learned from launching and expanding news offerings in hyperlocal communities.

Crosstown from USC Annenberg delivers community-level data on traffic, crime, air quality, and more to the people of Los Angeles. It is preparing to launch its neighborhood newsletter project, which will deliver specialized stories and charts to all 110 neighborhoods of LA. Panelist: Gabriel Kahn, USC Annenberg professor of professional practice and editor and publisher of Crosstown. 

Read the case study on Crosstown’s newsletter project in neighborhoods across Los Angeles 

Torstar’s new local platform is aimed to deliver a robust local news and community-engagement experience that is scalable and sustainable for the future. With an app-first approach, the first ten Locals have launched and more are forthcoming.  This model for producing hyperlocal community content helps us reach audiences beyond our print footprint, showcase the diverse interests in each community, and connect local businesses with relevant audiences. Panelist: Pam Laycock, SVP of transformation and strategy, Torstar Corporation

Read the case study on Torstar Local’s launch of 10 hyperlocal news brands in less than a year

Wick Communications has built NABUR, a curated neighborhood social media platform for hyperlocal communities served by Wick newspapers. Membership is growing at the two pilot program bureaus, where product managers coordinate discussions, conduct experiments in news coverage, and organize events across six communities. Panelist: Sean Fitzpatrick, director of digital, Wick Communications

Read the case study on the Wick Communications project, NABUR