Virtual Conference Replay: Six innovations in local online news

Dec 14, 2020

Our-Hometown President & CEO Matt Larson hosted another virtual conference last week, focusing on Six Major Innovations in Local Online News, developed by Our-Hometown and offered exclusively on its customized WordPress Publishing Platform.

If you weren’t able to attend live, check out the full-length replay below to watch Matt introduce each of these cutting-edge tools and get a first-hand glimpse at how they work on the Our-Hometown platform.

  • Audio Articles is an exciting feature that converts published HTML articles into a playable audio file, allowing your audience to listen to the news on the go or while performing other tasks.  The feature includes both an HTML and audio advertisement spot that can be sold to generate additional revenue. As a bonus, these audio files can also be re-purposed to create other digital content for your website.
  • The Our-Hometown iOS and Android Apps take all of the convenience a reader may find in browsing the website and pack it into a small application that can be downloaded to any smartphone.  Our-Hometown's apps are fully integrated with its WordPress websites to work with the paywall and include all articles and advertisements. Apps also include custom push notifications that can be set up to alert users of new content as it is published online.
  • Reverse Publishing from WordPress to InDesign is Our-Hometown’s gateway to digital publishing.  While many newspapers elect to focus on publishing the print edition first and transfer content to their website later, the Reverse Publishing Suite makes it possible to work in reverse!  With this tool, you can publish all of your article content directly to the website first to strengthen your digital product and outreach, and then export the entire edition’s worth of stories for placement in an InDesign template to quickly and easily create your print edition.
  • Our-Hometown's Google Docs Add-On converts the popular Google Docs word processing software into a full-fledged WordPress publishing solution.  Once you’ve linked the add-on with your Our-Hometown website, you can draft, edit and publish content directly to your website from your Google Docs workspace.  All of the options you’d normally find in the WordPress Article editor are available in Google Docs.
  • Our-Hometown's new Auto Publish Articles to Social Media feature allows publishers to schedule content to go live at a particular date and time in the future, while simultaneously sharing the post across several social media platforms automatically. This is a great way to get your stories out to your audience immediately as they are published, while also helping to beef up your social media performance numbers.
  • User Generated Content can be a great way to drive both readers and reporters to your website. Allowing guests to submit their own content for review and publication on your website offers the potential to cover more topics that you would not otherwise have the resources to cover, which in turn can bring in more readers. Of course, you can also ask readers to submit other kinds of media like photos or videos for a variety of purposes that can also drive engagement.

Be sure to check out Our-Hometown's Virtual Conferences page frequently for information on all of our upcoming Virtual Conferences and live webinars at