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Topics’s hyper-local sites: 177K page views in first month

The content is pretty thin, but the 93 micro-sites racked up nearly 100,000 visits from 58,000 unique visitors in the first 22 days.
By David Brauer

A couple of months back, I wrote about‘s “local, local” websites — the city-level (or neighborhoods-level in bigger cities) newsfeeds designed to rope new readers and new advertisers into the TV station’s web maw.

The 93 micro-sites, mostly in the Twin Cities, debuted April 8. Here are the numbers through April 30, courtesy of KSTP director of creative services Paul Gaulke:

177,843 page views
94,097 total visits
58,456 unique visitors

Not that we’re the traffic gold standard, but for context, that’s about 20-25 percent of MinnPost’s numbers.

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KSTP’s local content is still pretty skinny — I would’ve slotted most of the “local” news in my home “Minneapolis Southwest — Calhoun” section in briefs back in my days editing the Southwest Journal.

There’s exactly one “conversation” (which also is the only entry under “rants and raves” and “classifieds”), but then again, the business directory is decently populated. No idea what kind of dough those sponsors produce, but as the folks over at WCCO’s “The Wire” will tell you, it’s helpful to have an advertiser when you’re experimenting. The platform does give the KSTP salesforce a new reason to call certain advertisers.

As I wrote when the site debuted, I’m skeptical these really will lure a critical mass of local readers, assuming there’s enough hyper-local news junkies to ignite the social-networking aspects. Still, it’s early, so stay tuned.