It’s never been more important: “Catch them young… or not at all” is the theme of the first WAN-Ifra Young Reader Asia-Pacific Summit, to be held in Bangkok from July 10-11.
Organisers say the event aims to do nothing less than provide ideas and strategies for engaging the next generation of news consumers, on all platforms.
“Any news organisation that wants to remain relevant to all its readers and users should focus on getting the critical 15- to 24-year old audience on board, as well as reaching children at earlier life stages, their parents and their teachers,” says Aralynn McMane, executive director of WAN-Ifra Young Readership Development.
The conference will feature lessons from successful young reader initiatives at newspapers in Asia, Europe and Australia, focusing on social media, simple ideas for attracting younger audiences and advice on rethinking core strategies to appeal to all age groups.
Key topics include:
• Making social media connections with the young and what it means for newspapers
• How to introduce younger thinking into a newspaper without alienating older readers
• How newspapers are making money by engaging the young
• How focusing on life stage firsts offers a key, core strategy
• Great ideas you can start at your newspaper the day you get home
• The new bright future for print with parents.
- Jayant Mammen Matthew, Deputy Editor & Director, Malayala Manorama, India, whose company has demonstrated a persistent will to engage the youth through many innovative projects on multimedia platforms without alienating older readers.
- Markus Pettersson, Social Media Project Manager at Göteborgs-Posten, Sweden, which has an innovative and inclusive youth social media strategy that ranges from fun concerts to youth helping redesign the paper.
- Mariko Horikawa, Deputy Manager Digital Media Bureau, Yomiuri Shimbun, Japan, who will present Yomiuri’s successful supplement for children and will share some insights on the company’s special subscription schemes for grandparents and grandchildren.
- Ivy Soon, Editor (Features) at The Star, Malaysia, who heads R.AGE, a youth supplement and social media powerhouse that is helping young people in Malaysia to make their voices heard through Facebook, Twitter, Google+, blogs and other channels.
- Alok Sanwal, Chief Operating Officer and Editor, i-Next, Jagran Prakashan Ltd., India, the 2012 World Young Reader Newspaper of the Year thanks to its “total youth think” strategy.
- Lynne Cahill, Manager, Newspapers in Education for The West Australian Newspapers, which offers a model for smart sponsorship and unbeatable content that keeps teachers coming back.
- Gerard van der Weijden, Newspaper Consultant, STEPP, Belgium, who conceived The Reading Passport, in use in more than 30 countries, and is involved in a multitude of young reader projects all over the world.
- Chelo Banal, Editor, the Philippines Daily Inquirer, where helping adolescents with math became a money-maker for the newspaper.
- Aralynn Abare McMane, Executive Director, Young Readership Development, WAN-IFRA, who will share best practices from around the world for engaging young readers.
Awards in the 2012 World Young Reader Prize competition will be presented at the conference, and participants will receive full documentation of the winning strategies.
In addition, pre- and post-conference workshops will give participants an opportunity for hands-on, in-depth learning in areas such as young reader and new media, family reading, and youth pages/sections.
Registration details are at http://www.wan-ifra.org/young-reader-asia-pacific-summit