Small Publishers Tell Congress: Don't Forget About Me
“What keeps us coming back is that this event opens an opportunity for us that we don’t have on our own. Yes, we could call and make an appointment with someone in Congress, but we wouldn’t have the same impact. Secondly, this is a chance for us to network and get together with people who do similar jobs as us, and that’s very rare. There are a lot of long tail publishers, but not a lot of community amongst them. There are a lot of best practices and lessons learned that doesn’t get passed on. This gives us a chance to get input from other people in the industry and network on a personal basis.”
Last week, more than 50 small publishers came to Washington D.C. to meet with 27 House and 9 Senate offices, representing 24 districts and 11 states plus the District of Columbia. Small publishers converged on DC to highlight the importance of the advertising-supported internet empowering small business growth in America.
Now in its fifth year, the IAB Long Tail Alliance Fly-In brings small publishers to Washington, DC to educate
Congress about what digital advertising means to them, their employees and
their families. Small publishers, known as the “long tail” of the internet, have been created and transformed in massive numbers across the U.S. with the
advent of the ad-supported internet. Providing information and resources on a
diversity of topics ranging from baking to politics, these small publishers
represent the very best of the new economy of the internet.
The digital media landscape is not just about the larger
players in the marketplace, but also the diversity of smaller voices seeking
success on their own terms and scale. This annual trip to Washington for small publishers
is part of IAB’s commitment to make sure that Capitol Hill does not overlook
this crucial base of the internet economy that is powered by digital
Providing an opportunity for small publishers to speak directly to Congress is the best means to bring to life the very real threat posed by ill-conceived legislation that would disproportionately impact small publishers. These small publishers are the new face of ‘mom and pop’ shops. They represent a diversity of voices that simply could not exist without interactive advertising.
The Fly-In also included a full day of training sessions and roundtable discussions created specifically to address the business interests of small publishers. Small publishers, ad networks, and media executives shared actionable insights on how the community of small publishers can improve their businesses. The two-day event also served as a unique networking opportunity for small publishers, who, for the most part, work from their homes and have limited opportunities to meet other small publishers like themselves.
About the Author
Alison Pepper is Senior Director of Public Policy, Interactive Advertising Bureau.