The Communicate Influence Podcast

We explore the essential aspects of communications, marketing, and writing. Podcast interviews with thought-leaders look at important influences that shape a PR pro’s or marketer’s work and creativity for the better. Show host Sheelagh Caygill uses her experience as a journalist to ask guests probing questions, often revealing little-known tips and insights. Episodes always offer listeners solutions to common problems and actionable tips. Sometimes the topics we explore will have a less direct impact on our immediate goals, but they still matter. Episodes have delved into communicating with influence, enhancing leadership communications, and the connection between emotive content writing and poetry. Our guests, just like our listeners, are global. As much as possible, we go beyond international borders and engage in issues affecting PRs and marketers around the world. We feature trend updates, such as the growing force of artificial intelligence in communications and marketing, working on climate reality campaigns, and dedicated leadership support for reputation management and a powerful brand presence...


episode 51: How To Solve The Problem Of Shrinking Local Media

This episode is sponsored by Podthreads - a new online clothing store for podcast fans!

When regular host Sheelagh Caygill was in England last year, Karen Unland and Mack Male - both seasoned podcasters - kindly produced an episode for Communicate Influence listeners. 

Karen and Mack are the the co-founders of Taproot Publishing, an Edmonton-based media company whose mission is to help communities understand themselves better. Karen was a newspaper journalist; Mack was a software developer and blogger; they combined their talents and experience in 2016 to try to solve the problem of shrinking local media.

In this episode, you’ll hear them outline the challenges facing local journalism, why a strong local media ecosystem is important, and what they’re trying to do about it. 

Here are some resources to add context to their conversation:

  • What Killed The Newspaper? Google Or Facebook? Or…?
  • Mind the Gaps: Quantifying the Decline of News Coverage in Canada
  • Here’s how some for-profit local news outlets are building subscriptions
  • The media consumer’s dilemma
  • Business idea earns Taproot a LION Award nomination
  • Mack launched a podcast hosting service in 2006!
  • Karen started the Alberta Podcast Network in 2017
  • Taproot’s current podcasts: Speaking Municipally and Taproot Edmonton Presents: Igniting Innovation

How to support your local media startup and the ecosystem that nurtures it:

  • Share your stuff: Put the indies on your news release list and keep them in mind for story pitches.
  • Spread the word: Share what they publish and recommend them to others.
  • Join or subscribe: If the outlet sells memberships or subscriptions, invest a little.
  • Buy their services: If the outlet sells ads, sponsorships or other services, invest a little more.

Wherever you are in the world, if you are interested in Spotlight or Taproot Publishing’s other B2B information services, contact 

If you are in Edmonton, see what Taproot Edmonton has to offer. You may be particularly interested in the Media Roundup.

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 2021-02-19  29m