• Jeff Smith

IS THE CCT USING NATIONAL HOMOSEXUALITY & AUTISM CLICK-BAIT HEADLINES PROOF, ‘LOCAL’ ISN’T WORKING?


Let’s start this blog by clearly saying that the Cape Cod Times (CCT) should be doing exactly what they are doing. It appears they are picking up articles written by their parent company, GateHouse Media; according to their site, “The biggest oldest newest most local national media brand in the America”. The recent articles that caught the attention of CIL were; “Washington School Places Autistic Student’s Desk in Bathroom” “…Final Home in Phoenix is Going to Auction” “Oklahoma Man Says Church Members Held him Down, Tried to Pray Away Homosexuality” & “After Drug Test, Pregnant Missouri Woman Finds Out her Home was Once a Meth Lab.” Most of the articles were published and credited to Gary Dinges out of Austin, TX.

Alright, now that the informal citing is taken care of, we can get down to why I am addressing this. Without being an admin on the Facebook page for the CCT, my guess is they are clearly looking for more clicks and the ‘local’ headlines aren’t getting the job done. This is the same formula being followed by almost every large media outlet, so why should the CCT be any different? They are running social media ads, for subscriptions according to Facebook’s ‘Page Transparency’ section; however, more clicks lead to an expansive audience & more ad revenue. Noticing these headlines inspired this blog, but upon further review of their Facebook page a generous portion of their content is sponsored content. Good for them. We applaud them for having the audience to pull that off. It seems half of the radio stations and newspapers in America are also discussing Boston Market’s mac-n cheese. There must be money being exchanged there. Also, I am sure these headlines are the result of someone like me encouraging them to do exactly what they are doing, for the exact same reasons we are writing this blog. Let me be clear, CIL is using the Cape Cod Times for clicks. Game recognize game. We all want you to click on our sites and support our clients.

The Cape Cod Times did respond to my question regarding their use of headlines with the following quote, "The Cape Cod Times is part of the national media company GateHouse Media Inc., and as such we occasionally use our digital platforms for national content to drive audience engagement. While not local, most of these posts get a high number of reads, reacts and comments -- in other words, people are interested in them. But we understand not everyone likes those posts, and for those folks we recommend you move on to the next one, which assuredly is local, as was the last post and as will be the next. We continue to be the leader in producing news and information that's important to the Cape and Islands and we're grateful to the readers of all we post on our websites and social media." Paul Pronovost, editor.

If you have the audience, and they do, why would you not make money like this. Advertising doesn’t have to be on a billboard in 2019; and just because their business is ‘traditional’, their advertising doesn’t have to be outdated. Brand is the dominant force behind advertising moving forward. Looking to build your brand? Want to understand how to advertise? CIL Digital Marketing is here for you!

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