As legacy news models continue to struggle, digital startups appear promising. However, while barriers to publication are few — no printing press or delivery trucks needed —digital startups face challenges as they build brands from scratch.
This Medill Local News Initiative article highlights organizations and programs, including Project Oasis, affiliated with the UNC Center for Innovation and Sustainability in Local Media, that support digital startups around the country.
The article also cites the latest U.S. News Deserts research from Knight Chair in Journalism and Digital Media Economics Penny Abernathy and gives digital startup advice from several industry experts:
- Start with a year’s financial stake, but don’t raise so much money that it tempts you to grow too fast.
- Worry about the business as much as the journalism.
- Diversify your revenue sources. Beware of overreliance on ads. Consider crowdfunding.
- Learn your audience. When you think you’ve talked to enough people in your community, talk to some more.