Ad sales hinge on city's PR

MILWAUKEE: Declining ad sales have inspired the Milwaukee

Journal-Sentinel to put into practice the old maxim: if Mohammed won't

go to the mountain, then the mountain must come to Mohammed.

Deciding it's time to do PR for its city, the newspaper has appointed

Robert Schwartz to the new position of business development director. He

is charged with promoting the city to persuade retailers and potential

advertisers to move there.

"We have to go out and tell the Milwaukee story," said Schwartz,

formerly the assistant ad director. "The approach I'm going to bring to

this venture is a collaborative one."

Schwartz will initially contact local public and private economic

development organizations, and real estate sources to see what resources

the paper can provide them to help attract new retailers.

The paper's marketing and advertising departments routinely collect

demographic and purchasing-power data on the area, the type of

information that would interest retailers.

Schwartz also hopes to meet with retailers that show an interest in the

city. The Milwaukee market's loss of several major retailers in recent

years has had a dramatic effect on the paper's ad sales.

It's too early to say if the paper will hire outside PR or marketing

help for its new endeavor.

"I'm a one-man show with the entire newspaper - except the editorial

department - behind me," Schwartz said.

Editorial will not be involved in Schwartz's promotion efforts, nor will

he be informing reporters when a retailer is considering coming to


In order for his efforts to work, he must be able to maintain a

retailer's confidentiality about such plans, he said.

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Already registered?
Sign in