The Burton Mail has launched a bold new web presence.
The Staffordshire evening paper can be found online at www.burtonmail.co.uk.
The site – billed as a gateway to the community – takes in daily news from the Mail and hosts sections for news and sport, as well as classified adverts for househunters and jobseekers and a growing local business directory.
One unusual aspect to the news pages is that the full story is withheld until late in the day.
There’s a “teaser” headline and opening paragraph to ensure readers return to tune in for more.
Editor Paul Hazeldine said: “It’s designed to be a taster for what’s in the paper that day. If people have missed the paper they can find out the news from our website.
“We have a dedicated Internet team, who are not journalists, and the journalists here fire off their opening paragraphs and tasters which automatically appear.
“We plan to put the main page leads of the day on the site and if anything controversial is happening – such as Burton’s Christmas lights which this year are appalling – we’ll run a poll from the site and post the results online too.
“We’ve already had a lot of e-mails from local business and the general public about the site.
“One of the big things we are looking at is allowing ex-patriates from Burton to take a look at what’s happening here and there’s a chance for people to refer a friend and spread the word.”
In addition to the Mail news and advertising areas, there are also links to the weekly papers which form part of the Burton Mail Group, including the Ashbourne News Telegraph, Black Country Bugle, the Staffordshire Newsletter, Uttoxeter Advertiser, the Burton & South Derbyshire Advertiser and The Citizen.
Paul Hazeldine has already made his mark on the print version of the Burton Mail by starting a complete re-design of the newspaper.
Changes have been made to the news section as part of a plan to make the whole newspaper fresher and easier to read. The moves have already resulted in a new masthead for the Mail and the TV pages are due to find a permanent home in the centre spread each night from next month.
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