I don’t subscribe to the Skimm (I do subscribe to Foreign Policy‘s Flash Points – which is like the Skimm but makes me feel smart.)
Clay recently wrote about how successful the Skimm, a daily news email brief, has become and wondered if the DTH could adopt a similar model. I work at the DTH and the email newsletter is more or less a mystery to me. There’s a link to email newsletters but this is the page for it:
And even if the page worked and people could sign up for the newsletter (which might be weekly?), the email newsletter doesn’t exist. It doesn’t exist because you don’t know about, I barely even know about it (this is actually probably pretty bad on my part – plz don’t fire me DTH).
Of course when consumers don’t know about a product, it’s the product’s problem.
If the DTH wanted to work on developing, branding and promoting their newsletter, it would be a great idea. It would accommodate us busy college students and drive traffic to the site.
But it would never be as popular as the Skimm. Because the Skimm is sassy. It adds its own quips and has its own charm. It’s like your snarky, news-junkie friend rapid-fire telling you the news.
And while the DTH writers are witty, their publications can’t be. For instance, there was a story on Friday about the rapid business turnover on Franklin St. If the DTH wanted to be Skimm-like, I would have an email headline say something like, “Another one bites the dust” or “No one wanted fries with that”. (Oh my gosh I am hilarious). I would also add that none of the businesses were advertising with the DTH, the largest community publication (zing!)
The point is that the Skimm puts its personality into its emails. And the DTH can’t do that. Right, Jenny?
But Clay, I think you’re on to something. A snarky, UNC Skimm-style email that links to DTH stories would be awesome. Journalists just can’t be the ones who make it.