Happily, today marks the first anniversary of the relaunch of Chelsea Update.
It’s a long publisher’s column this time, because well, I only get to do this once.
First off, I cannot begin to thank the Chelsea community enough for all of your support – in words, donations and advertising.
And, I’d also like to once again thank my neighbor, Heather Newman, who launched Chelsea Update and who trusted me to purchase “her baby” and run with it.
Thank you, everyone, for all the tips and information you pass along to me. It’s so important to the success of this little venture. I try to promptly acknowledge that I’ve received the information, so people aren’t left wondering, and to give credit in a bold acknowledgment at the top of those stories. Plus, I do my best to let people know exactly when their information will be published.
Not a word is seen on Chelsea Update that hasn’t been touched by my fingers. Typos and all. And, if I make a mistake, I try to promptly correct it. So if you see something amiss — let me know and I’ll fix it.
If you’re a Facebook friend of the site, then you know I’ve been on a mission to reach 1,400 fans in the first year. A lofty goal? Perhaps. But thanks to all of you, as of this writing, Chelsea Update has 1,418 Facebook friends.
In addition to the information that the community is kind enough to send me, equally as important is your financial support. It’s a component that’s necessary to continue Chelsea Update because as you know, I’m a one-woman show with no corporate backing. And providing you with all the news that’s fit to post about Chelsea is how I’m trying to make a living.
So as I head into my second year, I sincerely hope that everyone will consider “subscribing” to Chelsea Update, so that I can continue my efforts and improve my coverage at the same time. In the past, I’ve reluctantly begged for donations of any amount, and still intend to do that. But now I’m suggesting that readers consider paying a yearly subscription of $50 a year. (Or more if you’d like to do so.)
Readers can send a check made out to Chelsea Update to 18829 Bush Road, Chelsea, MI 48118 or use the Paypal button at the top of the page.
I’m hoping that if enough people “subscribe,” I’ll have a more steady income stream, which will allow me to not only continue focusing all my efforts on Chelsea Update, but also to pay a part-time person to help me. Chelsea Update will continue to be freely available to anyone who would like to read it, but I’m hoping you’ll show your appreciation of my hard work by purchasing a subscription.
Or an ad.
And while I’m on the topic of financial support, I want to give a huge shout out to the many local businesses who believed in me and took a chance on my dream.
In the first year, I’ve tried to keep advertising super affordable to attract as many businesses as possible. And here’s an incentive for those that have said they plan to advertise — but haven’t gotten around to it yet. Please commit to that ad before the end of the month because rates are going up slightly as of Aug. 1. If you are already advertising or commit to advertising before the end of July, the lower rates will hold for another year. (And to those businesses that are already advertising, please put a bug in the ears of your friends to support my efforts as well.)
The last year has easily been the most fun I’ve had my 33 years in this crazy news business. And, yes, I’ve worked harder as my own boss than I’ve ever worked in my life. In addition to writing all these stories and taking all these photos, I’m answering emails and phone calls, trying to generate more revenue, bill advertisers and market Chelsea Update. All those devilish little details that are part of running a successful business.
I’ve said all along that this site is truly the community’s site and I’m giving it my all, seven days a week, to make sure there’s plenty of variety to keep everyone happy. I listen closely to what you tell me and I’ve adjusted my coverage accordingly. When I went too far down the happy story trail for some readers and they were honest with me about it, I immediately changed the mix of news, features, happenings and events.
Please know that my heart and soul are in this venture, but I’m counting on you to guide me.
I’ve tried my very best to write most every story that’s been suggested to me. I certainly didn’t bat .1000, but I’ve written probably 90 percent of them.
I’m very proud of what I’ve done to date. And I hope that I’ve proved to this community that I can provide you with a truly local news source — something that people have told me they’ve wanted for a long time.
I love living in the Chelsea community and I’m honored to have this opportunity to report on it.
That said, I’ve never been one to rest on my laurels. This summer, I’ve spent a lot of time talking to folks, thinking, plotting and planning. I’m on a mission to improve Chelsea Update’s coverage as I begin my journey into its second year.
So please take a few minutes and fill out the survey below because if don’t know what you want to read, I can’t provide it to you.
Once the results are in, I’ll gladly share them with you.
And yes, I’ll admit it, I’m excited as a kid at Christmas to hear what everyone would like to see in the months ahead. I plan to take a few days off next week, then I’ll be back, relaxed and eager to get started.
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