Blog: The History of SNAP Newspaper Group
Jon Henderson, SNAP Newspaper Group COO
In 2004, Paul Dutton and myself founded SNAP Newspaper Group Inc. after the introduction of SNAP Newmarket, which showcased a local suburb just north of Toronto Ontario, Canada. This particular community was chosen as a test market for our unique SNAP-style of community-based advertising, marketing and media. The existing publications in this area, as well as those nationally and internationally, had grown stale in the public eye and the financial situation for community newspapers looked bleak. Local markets had been continually eroding over the years as large nationals and multinationals became dominant players who delivered mostly negative and political editorial content. In short, these local publications had drastically lost touch with their community – the readership and advertisers alike, but the population had little other alternative. This opened the door for SNAP. Utilizing our extensive knowledge of the advertising, marketing and technology fields, we recognized an opportunity to deliver a truly Positive Community Based Publication, blending community support and public relations within a dynamic financial model to ensure success. Not only was SNAP Newmarket successful as the new community paper in its own right, it also proved to be the perfect foundation for future expansion across the country.
By adopting a strong community foundation and gradually implementing a progressive use of technology, SNAP Newmarket set the stage for a unique and efficiently lean business model for other SNAP communities to emulate. With this viable foundation in place, SNAP Newspaper Group began the hiring of strategic and like-minded personnel to further reinforce the business such that it could be easily reproduced and transferred into other communities across the country and into the United States.
Over the past seven years, SNAP has grown to more than 61 franchise publications across North America, with papers in the United States and Italy, and it continues to expand today. While constant upgrades and efficiencies are introduced on both the technological side and new media fronts, the business model has ultimately remained the same to this very day; support your clients, support your community, and both will support you in return.