Tribune Company hopes one of its oldest digital brands, local entertainment guide Metromix launched for Chicago a decade ago, can prove successful as a national franchise for local guides across its newspaper chain. Baltimore and Orlando — it’s known as Orlando CityBeat powered by metromix.com — already have their own versions. None are co-branded with the newspapers but they shareToday, an LA beta launched to be joined by a New York beta later this week. The company plans to launch one in each of its newspaper markets, although this would seem to cover the largest ones aside from Ft. Lauderdale. Release.
The look and feel is designed for “the young and socially active” (people who probably were still in grade school when the first Metromix went online) and the local advertisers who want to reach them. Searchable database, user and staff reviews and tons of listings are at the heart.
IN LA, the site falls under Robertson Barrett, the GM of latimes.com and VP of the Los Angeles Times Media Group but it is staffed separately from the paper. (CalendarLive.com with its latimes.com imprint still lives.) Like the Chicago version, the sites will draw on its various newspapers’ resources although it looks at times like they might prefer for users not to think the newspapers and Metromix are connected. (Via E&P)