Evolving Hyper-Local Digital News With Metro Media


It’s clear that times have changed with the emergence of digital media. When was the last time you actually held a newspaper in your hands? The fact of the matter is that newspaper circulation has fallen with the mass adoption of the internet and digital media, which in turn has led to the loss in purchase intent of advertisers. Today, people are looking for more timely, local news displayed in a quick and digestible format on their smart devices — rather than going out and buying or picking up a newspaper.

Furthermore, as the population in urban cities increases, public transportation and a number of other mobility options becomes vital. In today’s world, fewer people have private cars. In fact, since 1986, there has been a 29.7% drop in auto and light truck sales per capita. For instance, Montreal is known as the bike-sharing capital of North America and even holds the highest metro ridership in Canada. In addition, millennials make up the largest generation in history and prefer having multiple mobility options (i.e. Uber, Lift, electric scooters, bike-sharing, public transport etc.) over owning a car.

With the transition from print to digital and with so many people now dependent on transportation methods other than private car ownership, there is an opening in the market to use geo-data to embed digital content and hyper-local news inside mobility apps. What better way to provide on-the-go news?

Working With Metro Media
Metro Media, a leader in local media solutions and the largest independent publisher in Quebec, was first introduced to Bain Public in the summer of 2020. Metro Media publishes a free French-language daily and 25 community papers. Metro Media’s publications are well recognized for encouraging a strong sense of community.

After finding our approach to product management unique, Metro Media knew we could help them realize their vision of evolving hyper-local digital media through transit apps. They trusted us to not only utilize modern product management to revamp their business models, but also to help them define and validate their product mission, strategies and tactics to propel themselves into the future — transitioning from print to digital.

Related read: Introducing the Bain Public SOAP™ Product Leadership Framework: A Practical Definition

Hyper-Local Digital Media and Transit Apps
Imagine hailing an Uber and as you’re waiting the local news appears. Sounds intriguing right? The goal with Metro Media is to use geo-data and their hyper-local content coverage in combination with urban mobility as a differentiating factor from competitors. Metro Media is all about helping local communities and concerned citizens who want to stay informed — whether that’s through listening, amassing data, chasing facts or raising awareness while facilitating local consumption.

It’s not simply about embedding Metro Media into transit apps, but to root it into all apps that help people get from point A to point B, whether that be bicycle, scooter or bus transportation, or even weather apps — Metro Media would be embedded for all-round mobility.

Embedding and adapting Metro Media to someone’s lifestyle is an innovative way to facilitate the transition from print to digital. Since transportation users are familiar with seeing the Metro newspaper directly linked with their daily transport journey, the switch to the digital format would be the logical next step.

Embedding Metro Media into mobility apps would offer:

  • Quick access to complete and concise information about relevant local topics
  • Up-to-date with local news and events while on-the-go
  • Connectivity to the world with low effort
  • Access to a reliable news source
  • Information in a digestible format

Looking to the Future
As we move forward in our partnership, we hope to push the mobility integrations to the next level. To date, our engagement with Metro Media has been both strategic and tactical and we look forward to developing the first version of their product together, making further iterations of this strategy. By working closely, we’ve been able to accomplish a lot and we hope to continue our work together well into the future.

Curious to know more on the work we’ve done to help level-up other businesses? Check out a number of our case studies here.
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Bain Public offers consistent roadmap planning processes & tools for business leaders and product managers organized around what motivates, inspires and improves growth. We offer a variety of blog posts, e-books and approaches designed to help organizations understand their digital strategies, introduce elements of roadmapping and establish product-led change amongst the senior leaders and managers. Our approach, product, expert advice and coaching helps entangle complex technology, people and roadmap dynamics. For more information, visit bainpublic.com or call 514–442–8487.

Thanks to Loren O'Brien-Egesborg and Abigail Ramirez Villarroel for contributing to this article as well as reading drafts and overseeing aspects of its publication. Also, if you have any feedback or criticism about this article, then shoot us an email info@bainpublic.com.