Asheville – For a guide to the best brunch spots to answers about what’s up with the city’s new bear-proof trash cans, tens of thousands of Ashevillans with a penchant for their city turn to AVLToday.
“Asheville is such an engaged and curious city,” says AVLToday editor Ali McGhee. “It’s not a town that just reads and moves on. They want to have a discussion about it and really kind of get to the bottom of it.”
The hyper-local media company focuses on activating the local community through daily email newsletters that aggregate positive and impactful local news and events. Since its inception in February 2018, the free platform has grown to 35,000 subscribers.
“Our audience growth is a testament to the fact that people want positive news that’s coming out of their communities that they feel like they can really be a part of,” McGhee says.
Parent company 6am City launched in Greenville in 2016. Since then, it has expanded to seven publications in cities throughout the Southeast. Every market is run by a tag-team of two editors. As the name suggests, newsletters hit mailboxes every weekday at 6 am.
“We keep things pretty short and to the point. So the idea is that this is something that, you know, over your cup of morning coffee, you can spend four or five minutes scrolling through and kind of just have all the news in your pocket for the day,” McGhee says.
McGhee and Bolen write original content for the site and curate content from local contributors. Succinct story summaries link in the email to longer web articles. AVLToday is chock-full of local events, civic answers, and restaurant guides.
“We pull a wide variety of news from various sources around town to give people a big picture and also clue people into stuff that’s happening that they might not know about,” McGhee says. “We aim to make them more informed and more engaged citizens and get them excited about their community.”
Much care was given in choosing AVLToday’s editorial team, says McGhee. McGhee, former editor of Asheville Grit, and Bolen, former assistant editor of WNC magazine, are Asheville natives with backgrounds in home-grown media. Hometown pride is at the center of AVLToday’s mission. The publication works to showcase the best of the city for its resident and tourist subscribers.
Feedback is key to aggregating content representative of readers’ interests. The team answers every email that subscribers send in.
“The readers inform what the newsletter is reporting on, and the newsletter goes kind of feeds back into the reader. So it’s this kind of loop of curiosity and responding to one another,” McGhee says.
To sign up for the newsletter go to www.avltoday.6amcity.com