First, let me thank you for the trust you place in The Local to deliver your advertising message to the residents of Northwest Philadelphia.
First, let me thank you for the trust you place in The Local to deliver your advertising message to the residents of Northwest Philadelphia. Whether you have been advertising with The Local for decades or whether you ran your first ad with us last week, we appreciate your business, and we take very seriously our responsibility to get your message in front of as many potential customers as possible and generate results for your marketing investment.
Over the past several years, The Chestnut Hill Local has faced the same issues and headwinds many of you have been dealing with. And just like you, we have struggled and fought and scratched our way through a pandemic, supply shortages, rising costs, revenue concerns, the list goes on. It is as if you have to tackle the twelve labors of Hercules just to make ends meet. No sooner do you obtain the war belt from the Amazon princess, than you have to turn around and steal the cattle from the three-bodied monster. But what am I telling you? You know what I’m saying.
Over the past three and a half years, our printing and paper costs have soared. On top of that, mailing costs continue to rise every year. The cost of printing and delivering the newspaper has increased by about 25% over that period. Health benefits for staff continue to rise annually. Bank fees and insurance fees increase. Energy costs are up. Meanwhile, we have not given the staff a raise despite the increases in their cost of living. Like many of you, we have very dedicated people working for us. And we wish we could do more for them.
And we’ve asked more of them than ever. Since late 2020, we’ve launched Mt. Airy Local, created Wissahickon Magazine, reimagined Explore, redesigned our website, and expanded and improved our news coverage of Chestnut Hill, Mt. Airy and the surrounding communities.
I cannot tell you the last time The Local raised advertising rates. Not because I’m sworn to secrecy. But because I don’t know. The last rate increase was before my time at The Local and my tenure is rapidly approaching five years.
But I do know, and am writing this letter to let you know, that we have NO plans to raise rates anytime soon. We understand that most of our customers are small businesses like us. And, I know I have grown tired of receiving rate increase letters. And I’m sure you have. Besides, if we raise our rates, you will either decrease the size or frequency of your ads to keep your spending the same, but by doing so, reduce the effectiveness of your marketing efforts. As in many things, size and frequency matter in advertising. It is my hope that you will recognize the value of advertising in The Local versus other options and take even more advantage of our affordable, effective advertising options in the paper, in the magazines, and online. Ask your sales reps about our small business special rates.
We are part of the same community which means we are invested in each other. Our decision not to raise our advertising rates is an investment in our business community. Your decision to choose The Local to deliver your marketing messages is an investment in your independent community newspaper and it supports a professional local news source covering our Northwest neighborhoods.
Together, we will continue to do great things!
You have my kindest regards,