In 2015, The Standard embarked on a journey that many said was quite ambitious, as we set about to carve a path that would steer us towards the direction we wanted to take. We made changes that we believed were necessary, and at the forefront of it was technology that would drive the dynamism that was coursing through the paper.
Technology, after all, is the great equalizer the tool that has been leveling the playing field in the last several years, giving smaller outfits the leverage to create innovative, groundbreaking content that could be distributed to a wider market and reach a bigger audience that is not limited to the local market but the rest of the world. Thanks to technology, it has become easier for smaller players with limited resources to compete with the big guns on the same space and give them a run for their money, so to speak.
We at The Standard knew that we have to embrace technology for us not to be left behind and run over by a rapidly changing world, with audiences becoming more aware, more sophisticated, more empowered and more opinionated. And we would like to think that we have stepped up to these changes, boosting our online content not just on our website but on social media. Rather than passively waiting for readers to come to us we reached out and went to where they are.
More importantly, too, we allowed the discussion to become interactive and make it a two-way process, where readers are allowed to express their viewpoints and exchange ideas even challenge the content. In that sense, we engaged in a conversation with our readers, and we heard what they have to say.
We also started The Standard Talks, a round table discussion about pressing issues with key opinion leaders and experts acting as resource persons, engaging audiences in real time through live streaming.
These changes have enabled us to go far and beyond our base delivery not only of current news and opinions, but other areas of interest as well. As a result, we have now a bigger percentage of a younger audience, which is just as well since a high percentage of our population is made up of the youth.
And we have seen the results. Last year, the Rotary Club of Manila the oldest and most prestigious Rotary Club in Asia conferred on us, The Standard, the 2015 Newspaper of The Year Award. This was in recognition of The Standard’s exclusive, groundbreaking stories, hard-hitting editorials and forthright, thought-provoking opinion columns. We dared to be different, as seen in our new innovative format as the country’s only tallboy-sized daily with an interactive digital platform.
The saying goes that in this world, only change is constant, but at The Standard, we know there is another constant the fact that as the changes come, we, The Standard, will be there, not just as passive participants documenting and reporting on the things happening all around us, but driving these changes that we know will come.
ARNOLD C. LIONG
President & Chief Executive Officer