With one full semester with The Cavalier Daily down, business manager Kelly Mays is looking forward to the year to come and her work with the newly elected Managing Board.
Mays, who started working for the paper in May 2016, was the first professional business manager the Cav Daily had in over a decade. The original proposal for her position was drafted at the start of 2016 by The Cavalier Daily and agreed to by the Cavalier Daily Alumni Association, who provide financial support for the hire through fundraising efforts.
The role has the responsibilities of the former advertising manager role, as well as the goals of expanding revenue streams and planning for long-term change and development. It is just this that Mays has begun to do and hopes to expand over the next year.
Mays has already met with members of the new Board and is particularly excited about the idea of creating sponsored content. Mays said that many organizations have reached out to her for sponsored content from the Cav Daily, and she hopes to begin to utilize this as a new revenue builder.
“It’s a whole new world,” Mays says. “I come from the world of corporate papers, which don’t do much sponsored content… It’s intriguing how many people want to pay us for this.” Mays points to the Washington Post as a success story, which has both regular editorial sections and sponsored.
In addition, Mays has taken to the Cav Daily’s recent directives of growing their capacity for “digital-first,” starting with a suggested new rate structure that takes into account the advantages that bundling print and digital would have for both the paper and for advertisers. Mays is also looking into sponsored social media postings to increase digital revenue.
“Now, with the new Board, we have bigger opportunities to change and make some solid, concrete, different things happen,” Mays says.
Mays utilized the fall semester as a way largely to learn “how everything was done,” saying that it was a “huge learning experience” that has paved the way for her to “broaden the horizons” in the upcoming year.
“This paper can go so far,” Mays says. “There are unbelievable things that can be done here. It was like I was handed a very rough gift. I can make it great, I just need resources and approval.”