"We're hoping you can lean back with this thing, curl up on the couch and take it into the bathroom and read it," the digital director for Village Voice Media Holdings said at Saturday's "iPad: New Opportunities for Content Creators" session at SXSW. Jensen thinks the iPad will help publishers who value quality design and journalism, by giving them a more visual platform to work with than the general web. "It's going to bring back nice-looking design, and good-looking ads, too," he said.

Continue ReadingBill Jensen Talks iPad at SXSW Panel

As daily newspaper publishers and even magazines continue to mull charging for content online, little has been written about how such a move would help or harm alt-weeklies. Village Voice Media new media director Bill Jensen, for one, says he's licking his chops. "We're praying for the day that [daily newspapers] go behind a pay wall," he tells Mediaweek. "That's good for us. We've always been free and we know free. We're not complaining about it."

Continue ReadingWill Alts Benefit if Dailies Go Behind Pay Walls Online?

New Media Hub reports that Creative Loafing has trained some reps to buy and resell ad networks for key local display advertisers. CL joins Village Voice Media, which launched its Voice Local Network in June, in selling local ad networks. VVM new media director Bill Jensen says the company's network focuses on advertisers that align with the papers' main areas of focus, which helps set it apart from other ad networks. "When you are looking for music or a restaurant, things that are at the core of our business, you are looking for a little bit more than text ads," Jensen says. "We have the best food critics in the world. Its different if you are looking for a plumber."

Continue ReadingCreative Loafing, VVM Test the Local Ad Network Waters

At the annual meeting of the Association of Alternative Newsweeklies on Saturday, June 27, Willamette Week's Mark Zusman was elected the association's new president. He succeeds Metroland's Stephen Leon, who will take the advisory role of Immediate Past President. The membership voted on nine other board seats on Saturday, including two that were created just minutes earlier when AAN's bylaws were amended.

Continue ReadingAAN Elects New President, Fills Ten Board Seats

Village Voice Media new media director Bill Jensen says 40 percent of the company's pageviews are coming from the blogs on the newspapers' sites, up from 20 percent a year ago. He also tells TechCrunch VVM is on track to bring in $20 million in online revenues this year, nearly double from 2008. This figure, however, still represents barely more than 10 percent of VVM's revenues.

Continue Reading40 Percent of VVM’s Web Traffic Comes from its Blogs

VVM's digital publishing strategy has been in the news quite a bit lately, whether it was the company's partnership with a social-networking site or its use of Digg to help drive traffic to its stories. Chief operating officer Scott Tobias and web and digital operations director Bill Jensen spoke with AAN News this week about where the paper is going with web publishing. They tell us that digital is a growth area for VVM, both in terms of pageviews and revenue, and they talk about new projects like geo-targeted ads and a national food website.

Continue ReadingVillage Voice Media Execs Talk Web Strategy

In a video interview from last month's Digital Hollywood conference, Village Voice Media director of web and digital operations Bill Jensen tells Vator TV's Ezra Roizen about how VVM has stepped up its game online. "The key is ... we had to go daily," Jensen says. "That was the biggest challenge ... changing the culture to go from weekly to daily." He says that each VVM paper now has about 30 pieces of daily content going up on its site, in addition to the weekly content being created for the paper.

Continue ReadingVVM’s Digital Director Talks About How They’ve Approached the Web