The Daily FLIP: Calgary’s newest micro newspaper

Starting March 1, LiveWire Calgary launched the city’s newest experimental daily newspaper! We call it the Daily FLIP.

We believe it fills a gap in local news delivery that provides Calgarians even more of the information they need and want, but it has an environmentally-friendly twist to it: It’s built for the smartphone. So, it’s like your daily newspaper, but you’re getting it delivered directly to your phone. That’s where most people are getting their information these days.

It also allows us to explore the design aspect that just isn’t available with a traditional ‘newsletter’ set up. Things like the cover that you see to the right. We love the tactile, design-focused nature of the newspaper, and finding a way to deliver it in a 21st Century way was important to us.

OK, so what is the Daily FLIP?

The Daily Flip is a daily newspaper filled with curated micro-sized news bits. It’s sized to your smartphone display screen so it’s easy to read and you don’t have to use your fingers to zoom in.

We started off small and simple, but are constantly looking at ways to improve. People have overwhelmingly told us they love the product concept – and now we’re working on improving the delivery model.

It’s delivered each morning at roughly 8 a.m. (when you grab a coffee) via email.

What readers can expect from Daily FLIP

The goal of the Daily FLIP is in line with our current tagline: Know More Stuff. We want to find new and innovative ways to give you the information you need to know, the information you want to know, the information you should know – AND, the information you didn’t know you wanted to know.

There are little bits of news that we don’t produce stories on each day that are still important to make sure you’re the water cooler genius at work (now that many of you are coming back) or at the pub when you’re grabbing a pint with friends.

The great thing is, aside from the On The Web part of the Daily FLIP, 99% of the content is NEW and NOT replicated on our site. So, you’re getting more local news from your favourite independent daily news provider.

We’ll eventually have five primary sections: Community, Alberta, Economy, To Do, Athletics.

The focus (aside from Alberta) will be on hyperlocal news items that we see in Calgary each day.

Why the Daily FLIP?

Great question. For several reasons.

  • Design that you can’t really get from a typical daily newsletter.
  • Small bits of important news that fall through the cracks because newsrooms don’t have the resources to cover it all.
  • It fills a large niche in local news coverage that other media isn’t doing (and they’re not expending resources on it).
  • The FLIP is complementary to the website and allows us to provide more information without the need for a lot of resources. Remember, no duplication is the goal.
  • People read news on the smartphone (at least, 65 to 70% of ours do). We wanted to put it there.
  • Environmentally friendly.
  • TIME. People are time-strapped and information starved, so we want to feed that with convenience.
  • Let’s be straight – there’s an opportunity for local advertisers to reach a local audience.

Why not an app?

Another good question. For us, it’s simple.

A native app would cost thousands. We’d rather spend that on great community-focused, local stories for our valued audience.

Plus, today’s websites are responsive to the mobile screens and in tests that we’ve seen done, sites don’t look much different with an app.

The only difference between the two is the icon that sits on your smartphone display. It becomes more of a marketing play than an information delivery one, and we’re just not at that point in our independent news journey.

One of the big steps we’re hoping to take this year is a big web redesign (2022). We hope that can fix some of the web / phone interface.

So, have a look, and sign up for the daily dose of local micro news.