Last weekend, The Madisonian’s owner/publishers, Susanne Hill and Erin Leonard, attended the 132nd Montana Newspaper Association annual convention in Lewistown. Aside from the inspiration they received along with tips about how to better serve Madison County, they represented The Madisonian at the awards banquet.
This year, the paper received 13 accolades – two first places, five second places and six third places. While I’m grateful our cohorts in the newspaper world view our work as award-worthy, I care more that the folks we’re serving – you – view our product as informative, entertaining and enlightening.
It’s nice to be recognized for ad design, feature writing and page layout, but I would argue it’s even more rewarding to see circulation and subscription numbers trend upward.
We have a very specific mission at The Madisonian, and it’s one we adhere to closely.
“The serve the Madison Valley, Ruby Valley and surrounding area by informing, entertaining, enlightening and connecting our communities, while meeting the needs of our advertisers.”
While our mission is important, it is broad enough that we are able to apply it to nearly every call, article and request that comes into our office. It guides the fact that we cover school boards and town council meetings, as well as county government – that is how we inform our readers about tax dollars. It also covers why we have a lifestyle section – weekly, we entertain our readers with the kind of unique stories that make up Madison County’s fabric. As for connecting our communities, the most important question we ask ourselves every day is, “what does this mean to Madison County?” Then, we give it our all while reporting to provide insight to that question.
We are fortunate enough to have engaged readers. When we slip up or make a blunder, as humans are prone to do, we often hear from our readers. It’s appreciated because it’s constructive – we are constantly evolving to provide a better product, so we welcome feedback. Not only do we hear when our readers disagree with us, we often hear kind words of support.
That being said, here is my call to you: Reach out! If you have ideas for articles, columns or more, give us a call at 682-7755. If you’re frustrated we aren’t covering something, just call! There’s a good chance we haven’t heard about it yet.
It feels good to be recognized before our peers at the Montana Newspaper Association. It feels much better to be the publication Madison County residents turn to for news.