CYBERTORIAL* It was a year of awards for City Press as it swept the boards at the Standard Bank Sikuvile Journalism Awards, scooping the South African Editor of the Year, Story of the Year, Journalist of the Year, Investigative Journalism, Feature writing and Joel Mervis awards. The Sunday title was voted into second place in the weekly newspaper category at the Sunday Times Top Brands Awards. Most recently, City Press took home top honours in the digital category award at the African CNN Journalist Awards raked for ‘Faces of Marikana’.
The Marikana story also became a book this year, compiled by the award-winning City Press and Media 24 journalists who covered the event. On the digital side Team City Press came second in sub-Saharan Africa’s first Editors Lab Newsroom Hackday, organised by the Global Editors Network (GEN), African Media Initiative (AMI) and Google.
In its end of 2012 rankings, research institute Media Tenor noted how City Press has built on previous gains to emerge as the most quoted traditional media to become the country’s most influential medium.
Holding its own
Notwithstanding, the unpredictable and fast changing media environment, this verifies that this Sunday title is holding its own by being innovative in its packaging of news on its print and online platforms. Offering readers and advertising clients special supplements such the 100 World Class South Africans, Winning Women, How to Spread – Philanthropy series, among others.
City Press set the national news agenda with its in depth reporting of news stories such as the ANC’s elective conference at Mangaung, the Oscar Pistorius story, Guptagate and ongoing Nkandla scandals.
Digitally, City Press has grown from strength to strength this year. Its highly influential social media platforms now attract over 150 000 followers on Twitter and that excludes editor, Ferial Haffajee’s follower base of 76 000. But the real highlight has been the growth of its web platform; City Press now holds the eighth position among the top 10 news sites in the country and has grown at a pace of 16% over the last six months to attract 27 000 daily unique browsers. The City Press website and social media platforms noted a significant increase in digital consumers and notable increase of subscribers to the print edition.
City Press also grew its readership from 1.8 million to 2 million, with critical growth achieved in the LSM 7 and above category.
Next year, 2014, is set to be another major news year, with significant events such as celebrating 20 years of democracy, the national elections, and the Oscar Pistorius murder trial set to dominate news in the country.
*Cybertorial is paid-for content