Thursday, November 27, 2003

Quick, American Journal battle in Dallas


Had a chance to visit Dallas and see both free dailies in action. They're on every street corner downtown, but are hard to find in the suburbs. When you get a chance to examine each of them, Quick is the winner. It has tighter stories, better graphics and a neat local buzz column. The Journal seems to locked in the 1970s, with long, ponderous stories. The real battle, however, is distribution. Who can get papers into the hands of all of those high-income workers in the Dallas skyscrapers? Quick seems to have the advantage there, too. You can't just stack a bunch of papers in the downstairs lobby and hope everyone takes one. You've got to go to each floor and hand them out. But, with post 9/11 security, how do you do that? We suspect that a Quick distribution person is inserting cards in their papers asking people in those buildings to request that Quick be delivered to their floor. OK, "we suspect" is silly in this context. We saw the card and talked to the distributor. It's a neat trick. Kudos to Quick.

Monday, November 10, 2003

Quick is quicker than the competition

They're fast on the draw in Dallas. The Dallas Morning News isn't going to get stampeded by a herd from a ... oh, help me, I've run out of cowboy puns ... rival newspaper company. Anyway, when the folks at Belo, the DMN's owner, heard that American Consolidated Media was going to launch a free dailiy called A.M. Journal Express. (Why the word "Dallas" isn't in the title, we don't know!) Anyway, the Journal Express plans to launch in two days. What a battle this is going to be! Our guess is that Dallas, where most people commute to their jobs in cars, will be a tough nut to crack for any free daily. You can't hand them out at subway stations like they do in Europe.