An editorial by Gary Nager
An editorial by Gary Nager

For those of you who haven’t been checking out either our page at Facebook.com/Neighborhood News or our website (NTNeighborhoodNews.com) or both every day, you’ve been missing out on daily posts and news you won’t find anywhere else.

When we first started building our website a couple of years ago, we were lucky to average 10,000 “hits” a month, but recently, both assistant editor Matt Wiley and I have had posts that have surpassed that number of views on Facebook and/or our website in a single day — even before we decided to make a recent, much-more-mobile-friendly upgrade to it.

We brought in more than one other online marketing firm to pitch our upgrade, but we have been truly thrilled with our ultimate choice — The Crush Agency, which has offices in King of Prussia, PA, and now in Tampa, after merging with president Liane Caruso and her Limelight Marketing Consultants earlier this year. Liane has been our liaison throughout the process, which included “fixing” all of our already-existing content to make sure that content is all in the proper, mobile-friendly format, plus adding some new social media “stuff.”

Please feel free to check out TheCrush Agency.com after you see all of the new goodies and additions Liane and her amazing crew have made to our site.

The revamped Neighborhood News site has six “buttons” at the top — Editorial, Dining & Entertainment, Advertising, The Team, Calendar and Subscribe.

Under “News,” you’ll find a drop- down menu offering easy access to the most recent “New Tampa” and “Wesley Chapel” news stories (both online and in the print editions), plus my most recent page 3 “Editorials,” as well as an “Archives” button that allows you to access every story we’ve run from this year, all the way back to July 2011.

Under “Dining & Entertainment,” you’ll find drop-down options to enter this year’s “Reader Dining Survey & Contest,” and another to see last year’s “Dining Survey” results, plus buttons for our New Tampa and Wesley Chapel dining stories, as well as our most recent (since April of this year) “Neighborhood Nibbles & Business Bytes” items, “Out of Area” dining & entertainment stories and a button for “Videos,” which are coming soon (see below). 

The “Advertising” button has options to “Request Advertising Information” for our publications and on our website and social media. You also can “Manage” your existing advertising account, purchase and create “Classifieds,” and get some great “Ad Insights” to help make your ads look better  and get better results, so you get the best “bang” for your advertising bucks with us. 

“The Team” button introduces you to each member of our full- and part-time staff, including our freelance writers. This has traditionally been the most “clicked on” section of our site, and we genuinely appreciate that all of you seem to want to get to know all of us a little better.

The “Calendar” section of our site is still being finalized by Liane & Co., but when we roll it out (I’ll update you in these pages about it, as well as online), it will basically give you access to every local event for which we have information, including the Greater Wesley Chapel Chamber of Commerce, the various New Tampa & Wesley Chapel Rotary Club meetings and events, as well as all of the governmental and other meetings and events being held in our area.

So, if you send us information about your church, PTA, sports team or other local event, even if we can’t include the info in these pages, we will not only have them on the Calendar, but also post Facebook and other social media updates to help build interest and attention in your events.

The final button is our “Subscribe” button, which allows those who may not live in New Tampa or Wesley Chapel — and those who work in the area but don’t live here — to have copies of our issues mailed to them shortly after each issue hits our all-direct-mail homes, apartments and businesses. So please, check it out and let us know what you think! For more information, please visit NTNeighborhoodNews.com!

RIP, Daffny & Dakota

When Neighborhood News GM Nikki Bennett & her husband Jeff went away for a friend’s wedding the weekend of Sept. 26, they dropped two healthy dogs (Daffny & Dakota) off at their veterinarian’s office — All Creatures Great & Small in Lutz — to board them for the weekend. When they came back, they were told both of their beloved beagles had died of heatstroke, the only two pets in the kennel’s care who died.

“Our dogs were dead, but it was almost harder for us to hear that Florida law considers pets to be property, not members of your family,” Nikki said. “Something has to change in Tallahassee.”

Considering how hard it is for anyone to say no to Nikki, and the fact she and this publication have some friends in both state government (see pg. 16) & at USF, don’t be surprised if something does change…soon. 

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