New Year’s resolution: twice as often, twice as nice


As many of you already know, the BBJ has some exciting New Year’s news.

This is the last of the once-a-month The Bellingham Business Journal that you have all come to know and love over the years. Starting next year, we’ve made a New Year’s Resolution: twice is nice!

That’s right. Starting next year, the BBJ will be published twice per month. That means twice the front pages, twice the buzzes, twice as fresh.

One of the struggles that we have always faced as a newspaper is how to compete with other media in town when it comes to news coverage. In a way, it has been a good challenge for us because we have always had to work harder and dig deeper than any media outlet in town. When you only have once per month to break news, you have to be sure that no one else is going to get it first.

Because of that, we have built relationships with our sources that go beyond calling them when we get a press release, and we have always taken pride in our ability to dig up the news. We will continue in that tradition as we move forward and grow the paper.

Another advantage to going to twice per month is the effect it will have on our ad rates, which both new and renewing advertisers will like. The opportunity to put 24 ads into our paper per year instead of 12 allows us to have more flexibility in our price range, and it gives advertisers the opportunity to be picked up more often by our readers, many of whom read our paper cover-to-cover each and every month.

We expect the papers will be smaller — at least at first. But the same content will appear as has always been there: the top properties and data section, the business births, the buzzes and features, the editorials. Essentially, it will be just like a smaller version of the BBJ you’re used to.

We’re even adding some things, too. One of the changes we’ve already started is a new line up of great columnists for the next year. These folks comprise a broad section of the community, and I look forward to their contributions as well.

Here in our office we are excited about the changes — even though we expect a couple of growing pains along the way. After all, this is a new adventure for us, and although we can plan and plan to our hearts’ content, there will be some things we cannot anticipate.

That said, I have no doubt in my mind that our stellar team will handle it with grace. Our two newest staff members, reporter Isaac Bonnell and ad sales rep Galen Emanuele, have already proven themselves to be enthusiastic and dedicated members of our staff, and along with our old pros Sarah Drues, Heidi Schiller and Sean Echelbarger (as well as myself), we’re up to the challenge.

I also look forward to hearing feedback from our readers and advertisers as we move forward. What do you like? What don’t you like? What is missing, what should be changed, what are we overlooking? Times like this are excellent opportunites to incorporate new ideas, and we’re open to them. Give me a call if you see an issue that we should be covering.

So here’s to the new year, and our New Year’s resolution: May the new year bring us all prosperity and success!


Vanessa Blackburn is the publisher and editor of the Bellingham Business Journal. She can be reached at

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