The Daily Gazette — an independent, family-owned newspaper in Schenectady, New York — was already trying to improve their public notice process when their largest legals client — Registered Agents Inc (RAI) — reached out to them. “They said, ‘hey, processing all these legals is too much of a hassle,” quoted Bob O’Leary, the vice president of advertising at the Daily Gazette, “and they asked for our help figuring out how to streamline the process. They wanted an integration.”
At that point, RAI was processing upwards of 200 notices a month with the Daily Gazette, and was a very important client for the paper.
“We were all definitely on the same page,” emphasized O’Leary. In fact, O’Leary’s certain that most papers agree when thinking about how to increase efficiencies and improve the notice process for valuable customers. “Any newspaper in the country who’s running legal notices wants to increase volume, increase revenue, and streamline the process,” O’Leary said. “If they haven’t done it already, they’re going to want to do it. No one wants a clunky process.”
The process was certainly clunky. “It took too much time,” said Andrew Corsberg, who works in the legal department at RAI, “not to mention when you add a human into the equation. Humans are prone to make errors, and this is a legal notice. Anything we mess up — because someone inputs the wrong name, or didn’t type out the proper date — creates downstream headaches for our clients.”
Corsberg unpacked all the manual steps that the RAI team had to do to place all their legals. First, they had to input the notice information over three different times — into their CMS, into their daily portal and their weekly portal, as well as updating any other items in their own database.
“All that manual entry was ripe for problems,” Corsberg emphasized. “We’d have five people spending an hour trying to get the proper information, manually input it into websites, suffer through a billion buffering issues, re-type information, re-update our database. You can see how a lot of problems can arise.”
“My number one priority is running my newspaper as well as I can run it,” said O’Leary. “I knew our legals business had to be better for our customers, and for us. We were committed to finding a solution.”
O’Leary first heard about Column at Mega-Conference in Orlando last year, when his longtime friend Jim Fogler, President of the Florida Press Association, introduced O’Leary to the Column team one night. After his conversation with RAI, O’Leary reached back out to Column to see if they could work together to automate notice placement for their high volume client. “I told Column that we wanted to create an integration for RAI that would make their life easier and make our life easier,” said O’Leary, “and Column told us that they could help.”
“We saw the long-term value in what Column was offering right away,” said Corsberg. “If they could help us streamline the process, we could increase notice volume, have more competitive prices, and provide a better service to our clients. We wanted to be a rising tide that lifts all ships.”
“I wanted to please my customer and I wanted to grow volume,” added O’Leary. “That was my reason. It was simple. Column understood that, and so did Registered Agents.”
The whole process took only four months. “Four months was a very short window to build something like what was built for us,” said O’Leary, “but they got it done.”
“We were all a team,” added Corsberg. “Every week we made progress. Everybody involved understood exactly what we were trying to do.”
Corsberg also brought on Kat Bozin, a wildly talented software developer on the RAI development team, who he said “crushed it.” Bozin enjoyed working with the Column team. “Column was always quick to respond and quick to accommodate our questions. Their integration is also really easy to work with. We just send over the notice text with a click of a button, and that’s it. It’s a huge plus for us that it’s not overly complex.”
Since the Column integration, the Daily Gazette has experienced a 35% increase in notice submissions from Registered Agents, due to the efficiency of the new process and massive time savings.
“The manual labor has been reduced to a button click,” said Corsberg. “Seriously. Five minutes go by, and it’s done. The integration takes care of so much crazy work.”
“Column was incredibly responsive and attentive to our needs,” said O’Leary. “Even though we were building something totally new, the process with Column felt simple.”
Because of the ease of process and clear communication, RAI chose to work with Column again to build an integration for their weekly publications in New York.
“It’s because of how quick Column’s team is to respond, how quick they are to accommodate requests, and how quick they are to implement,” said Corsberg. Their priorities are in line with ours. It was an easy no-brainer to work with Column again. History was made last fall.”
In-House Counsel, Registered Agents Inc
(307) 200-2803 | [email protected]
Vice President of Advertising, Daily Gazette | Amsterdam Recorder | The Leader Herald
518-395-3154 | [email protected]
The Daily Gazette is the locally owned voice of the capital region, in Schenectady County, New York, located at 2345 Maxon Rd Ext., Schenectady, NY 12308.
Do you work with public notice agencies that bring high-volume clients to your newspaper? Column now integrates directly with the underlying software that placement agencies use to facilitate the notice process across a wide range of papers on behalf of their clients. Now you can offer them a way to place their notice orders with zero clicks.