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LMC and GNI Announce Publication of Digital Advertising Revenue Playbook for Small and Midsize Pubs

Series of free workshops will supplement content

May 28, 2021 – The Google News Initiative (GNI), in partnership with the Local Media Consortium (LMC), today announced the publication of the GNI Advertising Revenue Playbook, a comprehensive guide for small and midsize news organizations on how to successfully monetize web content and grow digital advertising revenue. This is one of the pillars of GNI’s Digital Growth Program, which also includes audience development, reader revenue, data and product.

The playbook is designed to instruct both publishers who do not yet have a digital advertising business or would like to better understand the basics of programmatic advertising and those who already have a digital advertising business but are looking for ways to improve their strategies or gain new insights to improve revenue. Through its six chapters, the playbook provides an in-depth and step-by-step look at the basics of digital advertising, improving audience engagement and website performance, developing sales solutions, building an advertising team and managing ad campaigns.

“Digital advertising is a great way for local publishers and broadcasters to increase their revenue, but many do not have the resources or know-how to get started or maximize their digital ad revenue,” said Fran Wills, CEO of the LMC. “We’re confident the GNI Advertising Revenue Playbook will be a highly valuable and much-used resource for small and midsized media outlets around the world to launch a digital advertising program or optimize the one they already have.”

Along with the release of the playbook, GNI and the LMC will be hosting a series of free workshops that align with the playbook’s content. Starting on June 1, the workshops will feature experts from GNI, the LMC, and other digital media speakers and consist of four sessions during the month of June. Anyone interested in attending the free workshops can register here.

  • Workshop 1: Setting up the basics and building your team (June 1, 2:00 p.m. EST)

    • Speakers: Chad Gilley (Maine Today), Fran Wills (LMC), James Byrd (OpsCo), Orli Ziv (Google)

  • Expert Panel: Real examples and best practices on building effective and sustainable digital advertising businesses (June 7, 2:00 p.m. EST)

    • Speakers: Maria Bastidas (MundoHispanico), Pete Doucette (Philadelphia Inquirer), Willy Grant (Great West Media), moderated by Fran Scarlett (Scarlett Ink Media)

  • Workshop 2: Leveraging your audience to accelerate ad revenue (June 14, 2:00 p.m. EST)

    • Speakers: Brian Troyer (Grist), Fran Wills (LMC), Kevin Flores (Google), Susan Scott (Blue Engine Collaborative)

  • Workshop 3: Packaging, pricing, and optimizing your ad offerings (June 28, 2:00 p.m. EST)

    • Speakers: Fran Wills (LMC), James Washington (The Atlanta Voice), Katie Wilkerson (10up), Orli Ziv (Google)

“The impact of COVID-19 compounded the financial pressure already felt by news organizations, both large and small,” said Ben Monnie, director of global news partnerships solutions at Google. “The GNI Advertising Revenue Playbook, with its focus on helping local media outlets increase revenue through digital advertising, aspires to help news organizations across the globe navigate the current crisis and build sustainable digital businesses.”

About the Google News Initiative

The Google News Initiative represents Google’s effort to help journalism thrive in the digital age. Through its partnerships, programs and products, the Google News Initiative works with thousands of organizations worldwide to support quality independent journalism, financial sustainability, and development of new technologies that drive innovation. Google allocated $300 million over three years to energize these collaborations, and to lay the foundation for new products and programs for a diverse set of news publishers, to benefit the entire ecosystem. Learn more from the 2020 GNI Impact report.

About the Local Media Consortium

The Local Media Consortium delivers economic value through strategic partnerships and

initiatives on behalf of over 100 local media companies in top markets across the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico, and includes more than 5,000 newspaper, radio, TV and online-only news outlets. The LMC delivers over $50M in annual financial benefit to its members by harnessing their combined volume and scale to reduce costs and increase revenue with technology and service providers like Google, Facebook, Monster and others. The LMC has also launched several strategic initiatives to provide cost-effective shared services and aggregated ad revenue opportunities for its members like The Branded Content Project, The Matchup, NewsNext and NewsPassID. According to ComScore, the aggregated LMC audience footprint spans 212 million monthly unique visitors and reaches 80% of the U.S. online audience. More information is available at

Media contacts:

Christina Gillham

Kristin Brocoff, 949-400-4899



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