In the media industry it’s often said we do a good job covering local news but a poor job covering ourselves. When it comes to coverage about The Garden Island newspaper, there isn’t much written because the most important news of the day typically is out in the community.
Today’s letter is to give TGI readers a snapshot of how things are going at The Garden Island and to ann-ounce some changes to your community newspaper.
Sunday comics, previously printed off-island, have been brought in-house and are now printed on our multi-million dollar press located in the heart of Lihu‘e. We have a talented and dedicated press team that has executed flawlessly during this transition. This is consistent with our philosophy to support local businesses and be a premier employer of Kaua‘i residents.
Beginning in August, the once-per-month Kaua‘i Business Report (KBR) will be absorbed into existing sections of weekly editions to bring you this information in a timelier manner. After all, why wait an entire month for something you can have every week? All KBR columnists will continue to be featured in The Garden Island newspaper. To accomplish this, we are expanding the business section in Sunday editions as well as the Real Estate and Lifestyle sections in Friday editions. Be sure to catch the new Fashion page including “Staff Favorites” in the Lifestyle section each Friday. We’ll also feature an enhanced shopping section to ensure you’re getting the best deals on Kaua‘i.
We’ve also made some exciting changes to our classified section. For a limited time, you can place free classified merchandise ads with The Garden Island and thegardenisland.com. You’ll reach over 50,000 readers and over 80 percent of the island. With all that additional cash in your pockets we hope you’ll continue to support our local businesses.
About 80 percent of the nation is now online. With that, you’d think the number of readers on thegardenisland.com would start to flatten, but we’ve seen the opposite. Last year, we dramatically overhauled thegardenisland.com with a new format, improved graphics, more video content and enhanced features. The results speak volumes. This year thegardenisland.com has experienced huge growth in unique visitors. Compared to a year ago, unique visitors to thegardenisland.com have grown by 28 percent to over 130,000 each month. And, we’re averaging over 1.1 million page views per month.
You now have even more ways to read local news from your award-winning journalists. In response to technological advances, we’ve expanded our product offerings to include a mobile-enabled version of thegardenisland.com in 2010. If you own a smart phone, thegardenisland.com’s news, information and classified ads are available in a format that’s simple to navigate and read. We also have a free iPhone application available and will soon offer a solution for iPads.
Finally, I am pleased to announce that Times Big Save inserts will continue to be carried every Wednesday in both The Garden Island and Island Shopper reaching virtually all 23,240 occupied households on Kaua‘i. The Times Big Save insert will begin again Aug. 10, 2011. This continues a long-standing partnership and demonstrates Times’ commitment to Kaua‘i’s community and its newspaper. We will also continue to feature specials and savings at other grocers including Safeway, Ishihara, Kojima, and Sueoka. These grocers are also strong partners with both The Garden Island and Kaua‘i.
All of these changes are an effort to make your community newspaper better every day of the week. No other news outlet has more reporters or spends more time, money and effort delivering you the most news and information involving our community. Our mission is to be your leading source of local news, information and advertising. That will remain our highest priority.
As always, we appreciate your feedback. Our contact information is listed on page A2 daily. Thanks again for reading The Garden Island. It truly is your community newspaper.