MinnPost made major strides toward sustainability in 2013. For the fourth year in a row, we ran a surplus. This year’s surplus was larger — $118,072 — enabling us to make substantial progress on building our reserves to a more prudent level.
We ended 2013 with $275,755 in cash on hand, our highest total in five years. This should reduce our need to borrow money in the summer, when our revenues are typically low.
More good news:
- Advertising/sponsorship revenue resumed its pattern of growth, finishing the year 19.5% higher than in 2012.
- Membership continued its steady growth, with 2,226 donors in 2013, up more than 6%.
- Our list of email newsletter subscribers shot up 24% between April and December, as a result of our first concerted effort to build that list.
- Our social media lists continued to grow — MinnPost now has 10,831 likers on Facebook, for example, up 55% since last year.
- Based on the traffic-measuring service Quantcast, more than 100,000 people visit MinnPost at least twice a month — double where we were just a few years ago.
- We sold out the Pantages Theatre for MinnRoast 2013. About 950 people including 64 sponsors enjoyed the gentle skewering of journalists, politicians and others including Gov. Dayton, Sens. Franken and Klobuchar, Mayors RT Rybak, Chris Coleman and Don Ness, Viking punter Chris Kluwe, Guthrie director Joe Dowling, former Sen. Majority Leader Amy Koch and gubernatorial candidate Tom Horner.
- MinnPost’s Sixth Anniversary Celebration at Solera attracted 37 sponsors and almost 350 attendees. The atmosphere was festive — in today’s media landscape, every year is worth celebrating!
- The four-year growth capital campaign to Take MinnPost to the Next Level passed $900,000 in total pledges. And we launched a Planned Giving program to recognize donors who have notified us that MinnPost is listed as a beneficiary in their wills or other estate documents.
Other milestones in 2013:
- We received significant new grants from the Knight, McKnight, Bush and Joyce Foundations, plus commitments from Allina and the Robina Foundation and the Northwest Area Foundation.
- We hired an additional staff reporter, Briana Bierschbach, who previously worked for Politics in Minnesota. MinnPost now has five full-time reporters, along with more than a dozen writers on contract.
- We established our second groupfunded beat, raising $100,000 to begin coverage of Mental Health and Addiction issues. Sarah T. Williams launched the beat in November. She joins Ron Meador, now in his second year on our pioneering groupfunded beat, Earth Journal.
- UCare became our first overall site sponsor, sponsoring the whole site every Monday in addition to supporting Second Opinion. We also added a new major sponsor, People Incorporated, supporting Mental Health and Addiction coverage.
In recognition of the increasing size of our operation, and our desire to build revenues so we can invest more in high-quality journalism, we’re looking to fill a new high-level leadership position, Publisher of MinnPost. This person will oversee most of the business-side operations, reporting to Joel, who will continue as CEO and Editor. Laurie will continue to direct our major donor efforts, major events and board relations. Go here for more information.
As always, we give heartfelt thanks to our hard-working editors, technology and business staff, journalists, advertisers, sponsors, Board of Directors, Advisory Council, comment moderators and other volunteers. And extra thanks to all our donors, from Copy Boys and Girls to Media Moguls and beyond.
A note to readers who haven’t yet become donors: Please take that important step in 2014. Ongoing support from our readers makes courageous, independent Minnesota journalism a sustainable reality.
The full text of MinnPost’s 2013 Year End Report, including our donor list for the year, is posted here [PDF]. Please email email@example.com to notify us of errors or omissions. Thank you.