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Exciting news here at VOSD: We’re going beyond our online site to publish a print and digital monthly magazine.
Voice of San Diego Monthly is part of our new membership program, which aims to build a community of readers (you!) to help support us into the future. Members at our top two levels receive the magazine for free, along with other benefits. The magazine is also available on demand at MagCloud.com.
For years, we’ve relied on thousands of donors, sponsors, foundations and partners to support its mission. The membership program — developed with a $186,000 grant from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation — will help us in building a robust and well-organized community of supporters out of its thousands of existing donors.
“We are not just interested in new local news models, we’re interested in sustainable local news models,” said John Bracken, director of journalism and media innovation at Knight Foundation. “Voice of San Diego is a pioneer online, and now we’re very interested to see them using the power of print to strengthen the community that sustains them.”
As it has in the past, Knight Foundation’s investment will allow us to utilize new platforms with the launch of the magazine published through MagCloud, a new product by Hewlett-Packard.
“The on-demand magazine allows us to repackage stories and offer it for those who appreciate a print magazine or a digital version for their iPad, yet we’re spared the costs of a traditional publishing system,” said VOSD CEO Scott Lewis.
As a nonprofit, we rely on contributions from individual members, major donors, corporate/community partners and foundations to maintain operations. With this support from Knight Foundation, we’re crafting a diverse revenue strategy that places greater emphasis on building a community of individual members who see the value in its awarding winning investigative reporting. The Raise Your Voice membership program features exclusive benefits including a new series of members-only communications and experiences, like “Brews & News” happy hours, a new live conversation series and member bus tours of the locations at the heart of VOSD’s top stories. Similar program will be unveiled this summer for community partners, corporate sponsors and major donors.
“We’ve been recognized for years for our investigative reporting and analysis,” said Lewis. “Recently, though, we analyzed our own service and determined we needed to be clear that the operation’s success depended on the involvement of a vast community of members and sponsors. This grant from Knight Foundation is helping us establish that community.”
In addition, we will soon unveil a redesign to our website to enhance the user experience and better showcase the importance of membership.
Clarification: An earlier version of this didn’t clarify which level of membership includes the print magazine as a benefit.
For more information on innovations underway at VOSD, please contact Mary Walter-Brown at 619.208.7510 or firstname.lastname@example.org.