Registration and hotel deadline Jan. 22

The HSPA and Foundation Annual Meetings and Government Conference Feb. 5-6 will bring together the state’s newspaper executives at the JW Marriott in downtown Indianapolis.

Early-bird registration and hotel reservation deadlines for the event have been extended to Jan. 22 in light of busy schedules following the recent winter storm.

Annual Meetings & Government Conference

What: Seminars and idea-sharing designed to offer immediate ways newspaper executives can take action to improve revenue and business operations

When: Join us Wednesday-Thursday, Feb.5-6

Where: JW Marriott, Indianapolis

Deadline: Early-bird deadline extended to Jan. 22 (payment may follow)

Registration: Go to www.HSPAfoundation.org/annualmeetings to register online or download a paper form, or return the form newspapers received by mail

Hotel: Group rate extended to Jan. 22. Use the link at HSPAfoundation.org/annualmeetings, or call (866) 704-6162

Information: (317) 803-4772

Register at lower rates by Jan. 22 at HSPAfoundation.org/annualmeetings, or fax the form newspapers received by mail (or download it at HSPAfoundation.org/annualmeetings).

Reserve hotel rooms by Jan. 22 for the HSPA group rate. Use the link at HSPAfoundation.org/annualmeetings or call the JW Marriott at (866) 704-6162.

Ken Paulson, president of the First Amendment Center, will deliver the keynote address.

Paulson, also dean of the College of Mass Communication at Middle Tennessee State University, brings his experience as former editor in chief of USA Today. Throughout his career, Paulson has drawn on his background as a journalist and lawyer, serving as the editor or managing editor of newspapers in five states.

Val Hoeppner, an experienced backpack journalist, will present strategies for digital news in a session on Using Social Media Effectively.

Hoeppner spent 20 years in newsrooms as a photojournalist, newsroom leader and multimedia director. She also spent five years working with journalism professionals, educators and students in her role as director of education for the Freedom Forum Diversity Institute.

Larry Maynard will lead a session on Actionable Ideas to Strengthen Your Product and Your Competitive Position.

Maynard has more than four decades of effective newspaper and media management experience and is intimately knowledgeable about the national and major retail buying processes.

He currently heads NGM Partners, an Oswego, Ill.-based consulting company working with newspapers to improve their advertising, operational and financial performance. He and his team have provided consulting services to more than 200 U.S. daily and weekly newspapers.

Steve Key, HSPA executive director and general counsel, will provide a Legislative Roundup during the conference with updates on legislation currently under debate in the 2014 Indiana General Assembly that could affect newspapers and the First Amendment.

Round-table discussions during the event will allow newspaper executives to discuss both innovative and traditional topics, including:

• Digital agencies: Explore how some newspapers provide solutions for small- and mid-sized local businesses that need digital marketing, development and maintenance of websites and more.

• Native Advertising: Advertisers and publishers are embracing native advertising as a promising reinvention of an old form of marketing. Find out how others are using compelling content to engage audiences while elevating an advertiser’s brand. What, if any, ethical issues arise?

• Niche products: Share niche product ideas that work in your market and learn from others how they generate additional revenue in theirs.

• Social Media at Your Newspaper: Take advantage of the opportunity to discuss questions about social media with a leading expert in the field.

• Promotional calendars: Discuss organizational tools to plan the year’s special sections, projects and promotions. This planning will help improve staff efficiency.

• Newspaper in Education: Learn about materials available for newspapers and teachers to help develop young readers and increase readership.

Maynard considers himself one of the few industry experts who continues to remind newspapers and advertisers about the unmatched value and content their print products continue to provide to readers and to advertisers.

“Your newspaper is not just a commodity,” Maynard said. “It has much strength and provides benefits to advertisers no other media can.”

After a successful newspaper career with Copley Newspapers from 1995 to 2002, Maynard held several senior positions at Newspaper Services of America, the country’s largest print advertising agency.

His lively session will burst the bubble of the perceived imminent demise of the newspaper industry by highlighting the key strengths of your newspaper and the industry overall.

“Newspapers have lost sight of the difference between ‘not performing as well as we once did but still a profitable enterprise’ and ‘soon going out of business,’” he said.

The session is designed to give participants actionable ideas and information they can use immediately to strengthen their sales story and their competitive position and to motivate and refocus their associates.

“There are more than 1,400 daily newspapers and thousands of weekly newspapers that continue to provide coverage and audience reach and deliver customers to advertisers like no other media, and it’s time we started delivering that message in a strong, confident voice,” Maynard said.

For more information about the Annual Meetings, call HSPA at (317) 803-4772 or visit HSPAfoundation.org/annualmeetings.