Last week the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette launched a new app that allows it’s readers to experience the news through a new digital communications medium the company has developed called PG NewsSlide. The company executives believe this new technology will reinvent the business model for newspapers. They claim that NewsSlide will take the daily newspaper audience beyond what is possible with the print edition by providing a deeper, more immersive relationship that includes text, video, animation, photographs and interactive elements including charts, graphs and maps.
The platform runs on both iPhone or Android mobile devices including tablets and can be downloaded for free from the iTunes or Google Play Store. The app is described as a platform that delivers a visually powerful, immersive experience. NewsSlide goes beyond words and pictures. It’s a completely reimagined multimedia experience delivering award-winning coverage of Pittsburgh sports and news with a depth and breadth second to none.
To encourage their readers to download the app and give it a try the Post-Gazette launched a sweepstakes called the “Slide Into a Grand” Sweepstakes. The sweepstakes is awarding one person a week $1,000 for a total of 6 weeks. Entrants must first download the Post-Gazette NewsSlide app to their personal mobile device. Once they have the app they need to navigate to the sweepstakes entry form within the app to register for the sweepstakes by filling out and submitting the required fields to gain an entry into the sweepstakes. They also need to be a resident of Pennsylvania to be eligible.
Like the print newspaper that arrives each morning, an electronic edition of NewsSlide will be sent each morning by 5 a.m. to users’ tablets, and mobile devices. “The future for the newspaper industry is digital,” said Allan Block, chairman of Toledo, Ohio-based Block Communications, which owns the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. “That doesn’t mean we won’t continue to print for a while. But digital is the future. NewsSlide is an attempt to break out of the current business model and create a new business model for the future.”
NewsSlide is also expected to be a game-changer for advertisers. Allan Block stated that it would “engage users at a new level.” He described NewsSlide as ”a sales platform to facilitate e-commerce,” adding “We envision a brick-and-mortar business will utilize NewsSlide to improve the e-commerce experience. An ad in this medium can lead customers to a seamless transition to an e-commerce transaction.”
We’ve been working with one of the Post-Gazette’s agencies, Garrison Hughes, who is based in Pittsburgh. They sent us the sweepstakes entries for the first week which was almost 400 people who downloaded the app and entered. The first winner of $1,000 has been notified who is Joseph Schmotze from Pittsburgh. We have five more lucky winners of $1,000 each to still award.