Imagine this scenario: a Squamish yoga studio offers some free online classes to the community.
The paying classes help subsidize the online classes.
Other Squamish businesses love the idea and want all those eyes on their unique products and services so they pay to be on the walls and community mats at the studio.
The instructors live, work and play in Squamish and they are professionally trained, so it is a win-win.
But soon, those taking the free online classes outnumber the in-person paying classes.
Yoga patrons get used to getting something for nothing.
They forget it costs money to pay trained instructors, to pay the rent and keep the lights on.
It gets to the point that the customers taking the free classes way outnumber the paying ones.
Some Squamish businesses abandon their local studio to advertise solely on U.S. social and search sites. Sure, they aren’t reaching the readers they used to, but it is cheaper, they think.
It is this situation that has forced many Canadian media companies to leave smaller towns for rural centres.
But not us.
(Thank you to our subscribers who supported us for close to 30 years!)
We’re staying put — with you. Which is why we want to work together on our new membership club.
We know that, like yoga, a free press is good for Squamish and good for our readers.
By offering a complimentary paper now, we are more accessible.
We have never had so many readers (our online audience numbers 300,000 a month, and this week, 8,000 papers are being distributed through town, up from 2,600 last week). Though it seems ubiquitous, technology isn’t equally accessible to all — and we know many of you just love reading exclusively Squamish news in one handy print package. And we don’t forget that this town was built on forestry so we are proud to support that renewable-resource based industry with our newsprint paper.
If you’re a local reader, we also want to keep telling your stories and uncovering more that matters to you. Our goal is to cover everything from regional politics, to your child’s sports events, to features like the one we wrote this week on vanlife.
Those stories can take days, weeks and even months for our journalists to get right. If we team up together, we ensure that stories like these keep getting told in Squamish for years to come.
If you’re a local business owner, we want to keep helping you tell your stories to your clients right here in Squamish.
We are all in this together, Squamish.
Join us at membership.squamishchief.com.