My career is officially 30+ years as a newspaper reporter, but my talent and niche is digital content and social media. In fall 2017, I was named Digital Team Leader for The Monroe News, a daily newspaper in Monroe, Michigan.
I have 20 years experience on a personal level and 12 years experience on a professional level in website content and social media. This is in addition to nearly 3 years of taking business and professional training courses in SEO and social media best practices. As a result, the social media accounts I host, co-host or consult with consistently have a history of performing better in terms of fan numbers and community engagement than those that I am not involved with.
An example: the 2016 Best of GateHouse awards honored The Monroe News in third place in its division for Social Media Excellence. This was our newsroom’s first social media award and an impressive one as we competed in a division that had staffs two or three times our size. My involvement was critical because during 2016, I hosted the newsroom’s Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram accounts; and co-hosted our Facebook accounts.
Another example: Monroe on a Budget, a blog project that I launched and ran from 2007-2015. It was the most successful blog hosted by our newsroom. At its peak, the site had over 30,000 page views a month. My site also consistently ranked among the top 200 across the country on that specific topic. A recap of that project can be found here.
Then in 2017, I was assigned to the Christmas Magic in Monroe – Parade and Winter Wonderland task force. My duties included writing most of the preview content for The Monroe News, working with our marketing team on social media and assisting on media relations for visiting media.
In addition, my accomplishments include:
- Grew The Monroe News’ Twitter account to over 16,000 fans. The vast majority of the followers are from our geographic area as shown by Twitter analytics and the content they respond to.
- Built up over 9,000 followers on my main Twitter, despite a rebranding of the account’s purpose after my personal finance site ended in 2015.
- Grew the Twitter account for Bedford Now, a weekly publication of The Monroe News, from 285 fans from February 2015 when I was assigned to that beat, to over 1,900 when I turned it over to another reporter three years later.
- Content and community management duties for newsroom and personal brand Facebook pages since 2010.
- Created this breaking news bulletin in May 2017 as a branded graphic that carried our logo to everyone who saw it.
- Earned over 1,000 new fans in two weeks using only organic reach and community engagement on a special project page I ran in spring 2014.
- Presented timing recommendations and applied behind-the-scenes strategies that contributed to noticeable growth on The Monroe News’ Facebook page during 2016.
- My personal finance blog’s Facebook page had picked up over 1,500 fans when the project wrapped up in early 2015.
Other social accounts
- Doubled the fan base in two years working on The Monroe News Instagram account, the fan base is now over 4,000.
- Launched and ran The Monroe News Pinterest since launch in 2011, to include adding branded cover images and a showcase gallery when those features were popular in 2016.
- Created video content for my own and newsroom accounts via Facebook Live, Lumen5, Vine, Tout and YouTube.
- Experienced with third party tools such as Tweetdeck, Storify, Post Planner and Hootsuite for curating content, analyzing results, scheduling posts and monitoring social conversations.
- Created nearly 400 one-off and standing images with via Canva and Snappa for use on websites and social media.
- Have made content and timing recommendations using Google Analytics, WordPress analytics and social media dashboards.
- Experienced in content management systems and calendar databases such as WordPress, Ellington, Saxotech, Helios and EvieSays.
Marketing and communications
- Edited a company newsletter at my former workplace.
- Wrote copy and designed images for social media marketing efforts.
- Handled employee committee recording secretary duties.
- Gave radio interviews and made presentations at public appearances as part of the Monroe on a Budget project.
- Assisted on publicity and media relations for the 2017 Christmas Magic in Monroe – Parade and Winter Wonderland event.
Honors and awards
- Social media awards include The Monroe News earning third place in its division from GateHouse Media in 2017 for Social Media Excellence ; and the 2014 Green Apple Award from Monroe Bank & Trust on recognition of the Monroe on a Budget project.
- Writing awards include third place breaking news and first place lifestyles from Associated Press Society of Ohio for work when I was at the News Herald in Port Clinton, Ohio.
- Photography awards include several county fair photography ribbons from Monroe County Fair in Monroe, Michigan, and Sandusky County Fair in Fremont, Ohio.
See what I can do
- Look up my resume / CV page or my LinkedIn.
- Look over my skill set and see samples of my social media work.
- See the list of social media management and marketing classes I’ve worked on.
- Read an award-winning breaking news article.
- Read one of my favorite feature articles.
- Read one of my favorite multi-media journalist pieces.
- Reach out at my email contact form.
I created a portfolio in hard copy format featuring website and social media work from 2017 that can be made available upon request.
And a note: This is my personal portfolio site, the work showcased here includes projects and assignments that I worked on before I became a GateHouse Media employee. As such, the thoughts and opinions shown here do not necessarily reflect that of GateHouse Media.