Upcoming Workshops & Events

August 27, 2019

PALMY Advertising Contest Winners Presentation and Awards Live

Here are the winners of the 2019 PALMY Ad Contest. The deadline for proofing has passed so if you have a correction, contact us immediately. 
The winners list is for proofing purposes only and is not for release until Aug. 27.
Best of Show, Best Overall, Designer of the Year and the digital presentation of all winning ads with judges’ comments will be available on August 27.
SCPA Executive Director Bill Rogers is available in September to come to your newspaper to present your awards. Or, we can mail your awards.

Sept. 2, 2019

Labor Day

SCPA & SCNN Offices Closed

Sept. 12, 2019 | 2-3 p.m.

Webinar: Stop The Drop... Five Ways to Grow Your Obituary Category

Online Media Campus Event

Obituaries and newspapers: Once, these two always went together, and this relationship provided publishers with a powerful traffic driver and an unbeatable revenue stream. But today’s readers face unique economic pressures, and they have new ideas about how to best announce and remember a death in the community. The result? Nationwide, obituary volume is down 19% and falling.

The good news: Obituaries are still the most visited section of every newspaper, and we have tools to turn that fact into more traffic and revenue. Using insights we’ve gained working with 1,500+ newspapers, Legacy.com’s Ronald Speechley will show you five easy ways to revitalize your obituaries (and their revenue potential). You’ll learn how to:

• Strengthen relationships with your funeral home partners, with
• Unique options to encourage them to work on your behalf.
• Teach your readers why obituaries are important, and
• Make it easier for them to place one.
• Increase volume with creative pricing options, packages, and formats.

Ron Speechley works closely with the newspaper partners in an effort to maximize the obituary category. Prior to Legacy, Ron spent 20+ years working for SRDS and built many relationships with newspapers across the country.

The cost is $35.

Sept. 13, 2019 | 10 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.

Digital Sales Workshop

SCPA Offices  |  Columbia, SC

Sharpen your digital advertising skills and knowledge on Friday, Sept. 13, as SCPA hosts Dr. James Bissell of Aducation for a full-day session on digital marketing and sales. Sponsored by the SCPA Foundation Smoak Fund, this event will be a mix of training and hands-on work catered towards SCPA’s daily and weekly newspaper members. Regardless of your newspaper’s size or resources, you’ll walk away with knowledge of several digital advertising topics.

Your audience and advertisers may have changed, but they’re still there. In addition to print, you may be able to offer your advertisers new ways to reach customers.

The workshop begins with an overall digital review of market trends, advertising sales techniques and combining print and digital strategies with a focus on consumer behavior.  You’ll learn digital marketing terminology, aspects of digital advertising and ideas for selling these products to clients.

Following this introduction, there will be four specialized sessions:

Analytics: Walk through of Google Analytics, a free website data tracking service to measure website traffic as well as Facebook Insights for Facebook Business.

Display Advertising: Display Advertising is online advertising using a visual ad on a website. Terminology, types, targeting and buying techniques will be reviewed.

Search Advertising: Google’s Advertising service for serving text ads at the top of keyword search in Google. AdWords is also referred to as Pay Per Click (PPC) Advertising or Search Engine Marketing (SEM).

Video: Video advertising that occurs before, during and/or after a video stream on the internet. Videos typically run as pre-roll, and ad units are like the traditional spot advertising you see on television. Dr. Bissell will cover Youtube, social video and Over the Top.

Following the session, training materials will be provided online and follow up exams available to get certification.

This workshop is perfect for publishers, ad directors, sales reps and other newspaper managers. Even if you are unsure whether you should be offering these services to your advertisers (either by doing it yourself or using a fulfillment agency), you need to attend.  

Thanks to sponsorship from the SCPA Foundation Smoak Fund, the cost to attend is only $75, which includes a boxed lunch. 

We’re limiting this event to 35 attendees and we expect it to sell out quickly so if you’re interested, sign up soon. 

Meet the trainer:
Dr. James Bissell provides advertising education and consulting for Aducation. He has been an educator in higher education for the past 9 years teaching advertising, marketing, management, leadership, organizational behavior and social media management. He is also the co-owner of digital fulfillment agency, PhDesigned. Dr. Bissell consults and trains organizations on digital marketing strategies, management techniques and the development of advertising campaigns.
In addition to his digital experience, Dr. Bissell has a background in newspapers, working several years in sales and marketing, new product development and digital services.

You may have noticed there is not a heavy focus on social media advertising. We’ll offer that as a stand-alone session later in the fall.

Sept. 27, 2019 | 10 a.m. - 2 p.m.

Weekly Editors Roundtable

SCPA Offices  |  Columbia, SC

Weekly editors are invited to attend SCPA’s annual Weekly Editors Roundtable on Friday, Sept. 27, at SCPA Offices in Columbia. This is a great time to meet with your peers to discuss what is working and not working in your market. 

We’ll start at 10 a.m. and wrap up by 2 p.m. to get everyone back to their hometown in time for Friday night football coverage. 

Topics are up to the group, but will include: FOI issues, motivating and training staff, special projects and sections, multimedia reporting, social media opportunities and issues, stories that get traction and more. We’ll also have plenty of time for show and tell.

Attendees are asked to bring ideas and samples to share. If you have ideas for discussion topics or specific questions you’d like addressed, please submit them on the registration page. 

The cost to attend is $20, which includes a catered lunch. Special thanks to SNPA for co-sponsoring this event! 

This event is only open to SCPA and SNPA member weekly editors.


Oct. 4, 2019

News Contest Rules Live

The entry platform and rules for the News Contest, Associate and Individual Member Contest, and Collegiate Contest will be available starting Friday, Oct. 4. All member editors will receive log-in credentials on Oct. 4. 

The contest period is Nov. 16, 2018 through Nov. 15, 2019.

The deadline to enter is Friday, Dec. 6.

Oct. 6-12, 2019

National Newspaper Week

The 79th annual National Newspaper Week starts Sunday, Oct. 6 and runs through Oct. 12. National and statewide promotional materials will be available in late September. 

 Celebrate National Newspaper Week and make it local by downloading these materials and sharing them in your publications to reinforce the importance of newspapers to your communities.

Oct. 18, 2019 | 11 a.m. - 2 p.m.

SCPA Executive Committee Meeting

SCPA Offices | Columbia, SC

The Officers and Executive Committee of the S.C. Press Association will meet to discuss membership matters, legal and FOI issues and the budget/financials.

Oct. 18, 2019 | 2-3 p.m.

Webinar: The Community’s Perception(s): State of U.S. Print Weekly Newspapering in the 21st Century

Online Media Campus Event

Christina Smith plans to engage with the audience on two major discussion points concerning community newspapers. First, she will briefly discuss one of her current research projects that explores why small-town, geographically-bounded U.S. weekly newspapers continue to be viable in the digital era, despite the struggles larger U.S. newspapers continue to undergo. Upon completion of a recent exploratory study, Christina argues that U.S. print weekly newspapers continue to be perceived by their audiences as the most relied upon news sources for the communities in which the¬y serve because community members believe the local newspaper and its journalists and owners serve as community builders, produce relevant, truthful, local information, and are highly motivated by community needs in order to do their jobs – all of which have long been the foundational rules guiding community journalism.
Following the brief research presentation, Christina will share with viewers a useful survey tool she produced for research purposes that she believes newspaper publishers can use in their own communities to better understand the expectations of their audiences.

Christina Smith is an assistant professor of communication at Georgia College and State University, Milledgeville, Georgia, where she teaches journalism. Before getting her Ph.D. in mass communications in 2015 at the University of Iowa, she worked in the newspaper industry as a daily and weekly news reporter for more than 13 years. As a scholar, Smith’s research interests include the roles of journalism in small, rural towns in the U.S., specifically as they relate to print weekly newspapers with circulations of less than 5,000.

The cost is $35.

Dec. 6, 2019

News Contest Entry Deadline

The entry platform and rules for the News Contest, Associate and Individual Member Contest, and Collegiate Contest will be available starting Friday, Oct. 4. All member editors will receive log-in credentials on Oct. 4. 

The contest period is Nov. 16, 2018 through Nov. 15, 2019.

The deadline to enter is Friday, Dec. 6.

Dec. 6, 2019

S.C. Journalism Hall of Fame Nomination Deadline

The S.C. Journalism Hall of Fame was established in 1973 to recognize and honor men and women who have excelled in their craft and made significant contributions to journalism and their communities.

Requirements for admission specify that a nominee must have made his or her journalistic reputation in South Carolina. If the reputation reflects achievements outside the state, the nominee must have been a native of South Carolina. Nominees must have been deceased for four or more years. 

Nominations may be made by anyone now or previously employed by or associated with a South Carolina newspaper. 

Nominating materials should be completed and submitted to SCPA by Dec. 6, 2019.

Jan. 9, 2020 | 9:30 a.m. - 3 p.m.

Legislative Workshop for the Media

S.C. Statehouse  | Columbia, SC

This event is open only to members of SCPA, SCBA and AP. 

The annual Legislative Workshop for the Media will preview the 2019 legislative session. This event will take place Thursday, Jan. 9, from 9:30 a.m. until 3 p.m., at the Solomon Blatt Building on the Statehouse grounds in Columbia. Make plans to join your state legislators as they discuss various topics impacting the Palmetto State. (Topics coming soon!)

We recommend this event for editors, new and veteran Statehouse reporters, editorial writers, city editors and assignment editors.

The event is a one-stop shop for credentialed media to interview key members of both the House and Senate. We will name panelists as they are confirmed.

All discussions are on the record.

Lunch will be provided. 

This workshop is sponsored by S.C. Press Association, S.C. Broadcasters Association and the Associated Press.

The cost to attend this event is $60.

More details and registration coming soon!

March 8-14, 2020

Sunshine Week

Sunshine Week, an annual nationwide celebration of access to public information and what it means for you and your community, will take place March 8-14, 2020.

March 20-22, 2020

SCPA Annual Meeting & Awards

The Marina Inn at Grande Dunes  |  Myrtle Beach, SC

You don’t want to miss seeing more than 300 of your friends at the 2020 Annual Meeting and Awards Presentation! The Annual Meeting will feature educational sessions, networking events and more in our jam-packed schedule, plus hundreds of awards to present! All sessions and networking events are free and open to all SCPA members. Tickets are required for meal functions. 

Meeting registration, schedule of events and other details coming soon!

Contests & Awards

SCPA recognizes the best in South Carolina journalism through our annual contests. Our prestigious awards programs are open to SCPA members only. Each year, nearly 4,000 entries are received in SCPA’s News, Advertising and Collegiate Contests.

  • Our annual News Contest recognizes excellence in daily and weekly newspaper journalism. We also have an Associate and Individual member division, and a Collegiate Contest. Contest rules will be available in October 2019, and the entry platform will accept entries from Oct. 4, 2019 through Dec. 6, 2019. Awards are presented at the SCPA Annual Meeting on March 21, 2020.
  • The PALMY Advertising Awards recognize the Palmetto State’s best, brightest and most enterprising advertising professionals and advertisers, and the impact they have made in their communities! The 2019 contest deadline has passed. Awards will be presented in person or mailed during the late summer. 

Other Training Opportunities

  • Inland Press Association webinars are programmed for the growth of your organization and career. Inland hosts more than 60 webinars on diverse topics each year. Because SCPA is a co-sponsoring association, SCPA members get a discounted rate of $15 per webinar. View upcoming webinars.
  • SCPA members can attend Local Media Association webinars for $29 because our state is a Media Association Partner. Check out LMA’s webinar offerings.
  • Poynter’s News University offers more than 100 interactive on-demand journalism courses. Several courses are free thanks to grant funding.