About Talking New Media


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Why Talking New Media?:

There are lots of news sites and blogs dedicated to New Media. But few concentrate on the business side of what is happening and write specifically for media executives, publishers, ad directors, editors, and others in the modern world of publishing. Fewer still have a editorial mission to help publishers succeed online and in mobile and tablet publishing.

"If I have to read one more story of some meeting somewhere that editors attend to discuss the fate of their industry . . ." OK, that's not possible, but the fact is that publishing is a business, and ad sales and marketing are just as (and maybe more) important than the endless discussions of the merits of paywalls.

Talking New Media is about how publishers and publishing entrepreneurs can make a success of their businesses online, on tablets, on mobile devices, and, I suppose, in print.

About the Publisher:

Douglas Hebbard, that's me staring into the cam up there, has been in the media business professionally since the eighties.

Upon receiving my "J" degree from Central Michigan University I left the midwest for Los Angeles. After looking for editorial positions, and being offered a couple, I accepted a job in the phone room of the Hearst paper, the Los Angeles Herald Examiner.  The job paid the rent and kept open the possibility of one day applying to the news room.  Oh yeah, the position paid commission weekly -- first commission check = five cents. Within a year I was moved to outside sales where he ran real estate (one man show).  In 1983 I led the launch of a real estate tabloid and fought the L.A. Times for display advertising.

The Herald Examiner Building, designed by Julia Morgan, the same architect that built the Hearst Castle in San Simeon.  ☞

Eventually I moved to the Santa Monica Evening Outlook (later, just the Outlook), a Copley Newspaper as classified sales manager.  In 1988 I moved to Northern California to be classified advertising manager at The Valley Times, in Pleasanton -- then owned by Lesher Communications, later Knight-Ridder. Later I was promoted to ad director, and served a very interesting six months as circulation director (great experience with a great group of people).

In late 1991 a recruiter contacted me about a publisher position at McGraw-Hill in San Francisco. They were looking for someone with a newspaper background to run their construction trade daily, and one look at the corner office overlooking the bay and the financial district I was hooked. While managing the Daily Pacific Builder, I launched my first magazine, CM Magazine. "CM" supposedly stood for construction management, but the team and I just liked the branding -- sort of like GQ, who cares what it stands for. It was successful right out of the gate because our costs were negligible as we already had a full staff dealing with the newspaper.

What followed soon after were magazine job offers, including my first exclusively trade magazine job as publisher of Roads & Bridges for a company in the Chicago area. After five and half years I moved over to Reed Business Information to publish two industrial magazines. While publisher of R&B, min magazine named it Most Improved B2B Magazine. Not a big deal really, but sadly I found out about it the day after I had accepted the position at Reed. Oh well.

The important thing for TNM readers to know is that it was while at McGraw-Hill in San Francisco that my first experiences with the Internet occurred, and it was there that I became convinced that the web was where publishers needed to experiment.  I struggled to convince media owners of the potential of the web, something just about everyone in media has experienced. Sadly, our industries are still way behind, though we are starting to see some leadership finally appear at some of the better media companies.

This site is about what these leaders are doing, about what small publishers and entrepreneurs need to know to succeed online, in mobile, on tablets and e-readers. The goal of TNM, though, is not just to inform you-the-reader, but to education me-the-publisher, as well. Because it is through generating new posts each week day that I will be able to stay on top of developments in publishing. I hope you find the news and information timely and useful, and the opinions I express thought provoking. If so, let me know; if not, let me know.

Also, if you are looking for someone who can lead your digital publishing efforts, you need to know that I can not only read a P&L, but make that bottom line, as well – contact me.  Publishing TNM is great, being in the trenches is even better.

Thank you.