Friday, September 18, 2009

He Has A Point, But Then Again...

Michael Moore has a new movie out. Capitalism is in Moore's cross hairs. He equates it with greed.

In an interview the other day, Moore said the newspaper industry has "slit its own throat." Moore reasons that the business model is flawed. Newspapers were bought up by big companies. Those companies targeted advertising as the way to profits, rather than increasing circulation. Reporters were laid off. Newspapers contained less news. That translated into fewer readers, and down the slippery slope we go. Moore does not blame the newspaper industry decline on the internet. He punctuated his remarks by saying "good riddance."

Michael Moore does have a point.

Newspapers do some great work, and they cover things that TV doesn't have the time, the stomach, and the money to do. Listen to the radio news in the morning. Most of it has been "borrowed" from the newspapers, and that's just sad.

It all comes down to customer service. If you want more people to read the paper, put more and better stuff in the paper. The same goes for TV, and even retail. If you want people in the store, make sure shoppers have a positive experience. Make the store look good. Get people in and out without problems. Invest in the product.

Yes, I know it's easier said than done. There are a lot of comapnies, media and non-media, carrying a lot of debt. Banks want their money. You can't print it yourself. I checked. It's illegal. The cash has to come from somewhere, and that means spending less.

You just have to hope things turn around before it's too late for newspapers.