Don Rogers: Vail Daily dominates in survey
Vail, CO Colorado
Of course what caught my eye in the recent marketing survey for the town of Eagle was the question: “Where do you get your information?”
Turns out, the answer mainly is the Vail Daily, which didn’t tell me anything we didn’t already know from other surveys over the years.
This is the most incredible of my eight stops in a newspaper career spanning east and west coasts, as well as in the middle of the country. The readership here hearkens the days before television, that golden age for papers in general.
The interest in the Vail Daily is intense, for better and for worse. But even “worse” is something I wouldn’t trade, that critic who lets us know what we got wrong or missed.
This survey wasn’t about us, but it was instructive to see that the next highest response was “word of mouth,” about a third of ours.
“E-mail blasts” comes in at about a quarter of us, followed closely by the Vail Mountaineer and Eagle Valley Enterprise, our downvalley weekly.
“Banners, signs, flyers” follows at one-fifth, then Facebook, then “KZYR,” “Radio,” “JACK/KSKE.”
This isn’t a readership survey, but it pretty much fits with what we find in those surveys, too.
Social and digital media are coming on fast but still tend to be overhyped for the moment, much as direct mail and “desktop publishing” in their faddish days were touted as The Answer for trendy marketeers.
None of the handful of county, TV 8, Plum or public television stations got a mention. That was the biggest surprise for me. They all are pretty good for what they are, but none are particularly relevant to Eagle.
I’m glad, of course, that this survey question lined up with others, along with what we see from the public in submissions of classifieds, letters, obits, Town Talk pictures and other indicators of genuine public engagement. Not so much the organizations that send press releases (though them, too), but the “normal” people looking for the best chances of their news being seen, their items bought, rooms rented.
Mostly, though, there’s a weight of responsibility. We’re supposed to get the relevant news of the day, and get it right. That’s the expectation. That the standard objectively is impossible is not a concern. It just is.
And so that’s what we strive to do. Get all we can, as quickly and well as we can. Correct promptly when we err and fulfill the covenant this community placed on us.
I view us as a work in progress, with much to improve. But we’re not all bad. You keep telling us that, too.