CONSIDER THIS: Why you should invest in the San Benito News

Managing Editor

Michael Rodriguez

Michael Rodriguez

The June 26 mid-week edition of the San Benito News contained 32 items of local content in 14 pages divided in two sections – one consisted of the hard-hitting stories you’ve come to crave along with the community tidbits that spotlight all that’s beautiful about our hometown, and the other was our Hurricane Awareness Guide that highlighted important data and tips on how to prepare for storm season. In short, Wednesday’s paper boasted 10,000 words and 20 images all rolled up into one convenient and relevant package. The price? …Just 50 cents.

I suppose this is why it frustrates me whenever I learn of a sold-out newspaper rack that produced just two quarters and a few Mexican coins. And while I’m compelled to insist that this is not of great concern to us, as I’ve contended in the past, such behavior speaks volumes about the mindset of our community. We’re already paying $1,434.50 per day for what amounts to a lack of leadership at San Benito CISD (that’s $717.25 for each superintendent, one who’s on paid leave and the other who’s serving in an interim capacity) but half a buck is too much to ask for the newspaper that keeps you informed of this? C’mon, man!

Alright, so maybe I was being facetious just now, but my point still stands: There’s not a better bargain anywhere in the Valley than what the San Benito News offers. Take our subscription rates for example. We charge $30 a year for the News, which amounts to just 29 cents per issue. It costs more to mail a letter at 46 cents per stamp; post cards are 33 cents apiece and a single track on iTunes is 99 cents – none of which will satisfy your thirst for knowledge and need for education on current events as much as our publication…Unless, of course, you’re listening to Bob Dylan.

Yes, one of our goals is to ensure the paper is read. Paid for, borrowed or stolen, it appears as though we’re succeeding on that front thanks in large part to the popularity of and the combined efforts of our sister publications, the Port Isabel-South Padre Press and South Padre Parade. Together, our print and online products amount to 78,000 in weekly readership – an average that’s increasing fast.

Still, even though we would be justified in raising single copy prices and subscription rates – as other publications have done in recent years – we have refrained from taking such action. In fact, our advertising rates have also stayed the same at $6.55 per column inch; classified ads are $7 for 20 words or less and just $6 if they’re garage sales; and legal ads are $2.18 per line. To put it simply, all services provided by our company remain – by far – the most inexpensive of local newspapers with paid subscribers.

Let’s say you’re a new businessowner who wants to get the word out about your establishment. With the success of your business at stake, would you take the risk of investing in word of mouth alone, or would you fork over $52.40, which by comparison may be equal or less than the cost of filling your gas tank, for an ad the size of a business card published in not one, but two popular newspapers read by thousands of people? Without bias, I’d put my money on what guarantees me more exposure.

At the risk of this column appearing like one giant advertisement, I’d be remiss if I didn’t promote all that makes us unique.

So let’s take baby steps: 1.) Buy the paper; 2.) Like what you see? You’re not alone. Subscribe for a year and get the paper delivered to your mailbox for nearly half of what you would pay otherwise, not to mention complimentary access to our e-Edition; 3.) If you own or manage a fledgling or already-established business, do yourself a favor and take advantage of our ridiculously-low rates.

This is called a good investment. If I could print a winking emoticon with this column, I would.

Permanent link to this article:

1 comment

    • WeThePeople on June 29, 2013 at 12:12 pm
    • Reply

    Well said, Mr. Editor. I agree…support your local newspaper. It is a very small price to pay!
    And Mr. Editor, keep up the good work. Continue to give us thereal story instead of what we are fed by the politicians! It would terrible to lose such a valuable resource that not only provides us with what is happening in our community, but documentation of our history.

    Inspiration is hard to come by. You have to take it where you find it.
    Bob Dylan

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.