foolishly boldly launched Natick Report last April 1, figuring what the heck, we’ve got some extra time on our hands given that it looks like the pandemic isn’t going to be over any time soon. As some of you know, we’ve run The Swellesley Report website in Wellesley for 15 years, and that we’ve shared our time living in Natick and Wellesley over the past 25 or so years.
So far, so good
We’ve gotten into a routine with Natick Report where we post at least something most days between the two of us, and we’re super thankful whenever we get contributions from residents as we did right from the start with a post about mask making. Thanks also for the tips and photos, and please keep ’em coming.
There’s only so much of us two to go around, so we appreciate ideas and content from you. Email us 24/7 at firstname.lastname@example.org (Deborah works on the our sites full time, Bob in his spare time.)
Our approach to covering Natick thus far has included:
- Reacclimatizing ourselves to Natick, watching endless board meetings (thanks, Pegasus) and reporting on Board of Health meetings that otherwise have largely gone uncovered.
- Systematically roamed the town for changes in storefronts or anything else.
- Introducing ourselves to town officials and other movers and shakers. We were thankful that all candidates for contested elected offices replied to our questions in advance of the election.
Covering Natick has meant covering heavy topics, from untimely deaths to social strife.
But we’ve also had an opportunity to cover fun and entertaining subjects, such as:
- This Natick Halloween display is a house of horrors
- Natick garden visit—it’s like stepping into a painting
- Have we rescued a piece of South Natick’s red footbridge?
- In remembrance: ‘Coney,’ Natick’s sidewalk Catalpa tree
- Digging Natick’s new Beach House indoor volleyball courts
- Natick bridge brimming with LOVE 01760 hearts
- Diving headlong into 2021 at Natick’s Dug Pond
And just this week:
Is anyone actually reading us?
Yes. Traffic to our website has grown from single and double digits per day at the start to four digits consistently at this point. We have about 300 subscribers to our daily email newsletter, and have built our social media following up to about 2,000 people from scratch (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter). We’ve broken a handful of stories, and traffic has spiked on those days, though we still could use more help from Google to showcase our work. We’re trying to be patient.
Our current big project is putting a new advertising system in place to help organizations reach more people and to make our lives easier on the back end. We’d love to have your organization join others that have gotten in on the ground floor by advertising on Natick Report. Rates start at $25 to run a flyer on our Community Bulletin Board page and increase from there for banner ads and/or sponsored content.
Bob & Deborah