Founder Ben Dryden of Spooner says growth is at the heart of the changes. “We launched SawyerWire.com and BurnettWire.com last November and December respectively, and their growth rate has been phenomenal,” Dryden said.
“The two sites have thousands of visitors daily, and that’s fantastic. But, most of our readers are interested in news, events, and happenings all over Northwestern Wisconsin. Their interest goes beyond any single county or community.
“As we planned our expansion into more counties, we listened to feedback from frequent visitors who said they want to find everything on one website and one Facebook page. They don’t want to be required to visit three or more different sites to get all the NW Wisconsin news. They want to go to one site and find everything.”
So what’s the big news? SawyerWire.com and BurnettWire.com are becoming part of DrydenWire.com, and all NW Wisconsin news will be on one site. Everyone on DrydenWire.com.
“Our advertisers like that too, because now their ads will now be seen by every visitor."
Yesterday, Monday, March 19, 2018, the first day of publishing all of the Wire's posts only on DrydenWire.com, Dryden said that it exceeded expectations by finishing the day with 18,000 unique users (visitors). "There are some news outlets that don't hit that number in an entire month, so it's exciting to see the immediate results, but there is a long way to go and there is still a lot of work to be done."
DrydenWire.com will add categories so you can quickly search through different types of news and find what interests you, whether it’s weather, local news, community events, government, politics, culture, or human interest, for examples, expect you will be able to find it quickly.
"In order for us to facilitate these changes, we have to have a platform that is conducive to a much higher-volume of published posts on one website, therefore, we have started the process of creating an entirely new website from the ground up," Dryden said. "It's a big undertaking, but this will provide a better experience for our viewers and allow for flexibility as we continue to grow as Northwest Wisconsin's #1 online news outlet."
For the time being, all of the posts that would normally be published on BurnettWire.com and SawyerWire.com will now simply be posted on DrydenWire.com.
Dryden said that he expects the new website - which will keep its DrydenWire name - to launch sometime in April.