Spring into bigger revenue streams with these seasonal promotions


While your paper likely has a long list of annual goals, I can bet increasing revenue is floating near the top. During the months of March, April, and May, there are many excellent opportunities for driving significant revenue from advertisers perfectly poised for the spring months.

Check out these ideas to set you up for success this spring.

Lawn Care

The Opelika-Auburn (Ala.) News put together a Fix My Yard sweepstakes that drove in $3,500 from two title sponsors and six co-sponsors. The sponsors also provided the grand prize landscaping package for the winner. More than 700 people entered the contest.

This creative Lawn Mower IQ Quiz was created by WDSN-FM in DuBois, Pa., and sponsored by a local lawn and garden store. Not only did the quiz bring in $1,000 for the station, but through survey questions and an opt-in, delivered 100-plus hot leads and added 170 new addresses to the sponsor’s database.

The Peoria (Ill.) Journal Star was able to bring in nearly $90,000 of revenue—80% of it incremental—for their basketball pick’em. With more than 60 advertisers, they leveraged a variety of sponsorship packages to find the right fit for any local business size. 

In Lexington, Ky., WLEX-TV’s basketball bracket campaign brought in $60,000, with $43,000 generated by a simple, custom advertiser bracket that gave businesses the potential to earn additional advertising with WLEX based on how they advanced in the bracket. Want to know more? You can find out all the details at

Home Improvement

The Columbus Dispatch in Ohio worked with Innovate Home Org—a custom closet and organization company—on a sweepstakes giving away a $1,000 custom home organization system. Not only did 72 people request a free consultation from the sponsor, but the paper was able to secure $15,000 in revenue.

A driveway makeover photo contest was a huge win for WHAM-TV in Rochester, N.Y., leading to $5,000 in revenue. But the big story came from the advertiser results. The local driveway and asphalt company was able to book over $250,000 in revenue directly from the contest and has already signed up to do the contest again this year.

Mother’s Day

The Times-Herald Record in Middletown, N.Y., combined a photo contest and sweepstakes into a full Mother’s Day campaign. The title sponsor, a local jeweler, was happy with the results, including 450 new addresses to add to its database. While the title sponsorship was sold for $2,500, the jeweler was able to make nearly $60,000 through additional Mother’s Day sales packages with the paper.

The Kingsport (Tenn.) Times News and sister paper, Johnson City Press, ran a Celebrating Mom sweepstakes sponsored by local financial planner, GAAM Wealth Advisors. The sponsor had over 200 people request a free consultation and the papers were able to generate $5,000.

Matt Coen is president and co-founder of Second Street, a Saint-Louis-based provider of private-label online promotions platforms for media compaines.