Portada Speaks with Hoy Chicago’s New GM

Portada: In the announcement of your new hiring, Owen Youngman, senior vice president of strategy and development at the Chicago Tribune, said of you:  "He is the ideal person to advance Hoy as the newspaper creates new value for advertisers and serves the local Hispanic community with daily local reporting."How do you plan to help the paper offer new value for advertisers?

John Trainor: I am happy to be joining a strong market leader; according to CMR, Hoy Chicago and Fin de Semana currently enjoy more than double the advertising share of its closest competitor with a 62% share of Chicago’s Hispanic newspaper ad dollars.
 
My initial plan to create advertising value (measured in ROI) will consist of continuing to provide readers with strong, relevant and engaging editorial content combined with a solid circulation strategy and a firm sales and customer service strategy. The Hoy Chicago team is very strong and I am very proud of what they have accomplished so far.
 

Portada: What are the main challenges you face and what are your top priorities for Hoy in your new position?
 
Trainor: Aside from maintaining a vigilant eye on P&L performance through a soft economy, one of my top priorities is to take the relationship with the Hispanic Community to the next level. Hoy has been the voice of the Chicago Hispanic community for many years and I plan to strengthen that voice by forming a more solid partnership with its readers.
 
My main challenge as the new head of Hoy Chicago is to lead through some uncertain times. As oil prices continue to sneak-up and keep impacting paper and distribution costs (among others) I will be observant on cash-flow, closely controlling “what goes out” as much as “what comes in” and looking for ways to develop alternative revenue streams that could enhance Hoy’s brand in the marketplace.
 
Nevertheless, Hoy Chicago has a very healthy P&L and year to date has even shown significant growth.
 
Portada: Does Papel Media still exist? Are there any changes there to report?
 
Trainor: Yes, Papel is under new ownership. They have fresh ideas and new strengths and I’m sure they will come up with great things in the near future.
 
How do you plan to develop Hoy’s digital presence?

Trainor: As we continue on the path of the web 2.0 era the digital strategy for every newspaper has to be a top priority. My tenure at Hoy will have a strong focus on digital and there are several plans in the drawing board right now.
 
Portada: What is the most important thing for Hispanic print publications to do in order to attract greater advertising investment in this slowing economy?

Trainor: “There is no crisis that resists 80 hour weeks” I would recommend to Hispanic publishers to keep a close eye on trends and be ready to make decisions fast, diversify as much as possible and be very strategic on all business decisions. Remember that during the great depression some incredible media companies were born.

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