New Mexico Local News Fund Incubator – July to December 2023

Program Details

The New Mexico Local News Fund is excited to announce the launch of our first local news incubator. Our local news accelerator and fellowship programs are supporting existing local news organizations and ensuring that they have the resources and staff to serve communities for years to come. This incubator will focus on communities without adequate access to sources of local news to ensure that every community in New Mexico has access to the news and information they need to thrive. We welcome applications from individuals looking to meet unmet needs for access to news and information throughout the state. 

Applications are now open through June 22nd for the NM Local News Fund 2023 Incubator, focused on brand new or recently created (>6 months) news projects!

The incubator is a partnership with the Tiny News Collective and runs from July to December 2023. 

Selected participants will receive the following: 

  • A $25,000 grant over 6 months
  • Weekly office hours and 1:1 guidance on business planning, audience development, creating content, and generating revenue
  • Technical assistance in areas like website and email newsletter setup, social media, payments, subscriptions, and grant writing

*Note: The program is remote and flexible; however, participants should be prepared to dedicate at least 15-20 hours per week.

Application information: 

NMLNF 2023 Incubator Application Worksheet (we recommend reviewing and completing this beforehand)

Application - Google Form 

Ask Me Anything (AMA) session via Zoom (details coming soon)

Deadline: Thursday, June 22nd

We encourage potential applicants to reach out to Joe Cardillo If you have any issues or questions while submitting your application.


Program Outline: 

Month 1: Vision, Planning, and Launch

  • Define your mission and vision. What do you want to achieve with your news organization? What kind of impact do you want to have? Who is your audience, and how will you reach them? 
  • Develop a business plan. How will you make money? What are your costs? What are your revenue streams?
  • Create a website and social media presence. This will be your home base for publishing your content and connecting with your audience. Receive assistance with website setup and guidance on additional channels such as newsletters and podcasts.  
  • Identify your audience. Who are you trying to reach? Where are they getting their information? How can you reach them?

Month 2: Content Creation and Audience Engagement

  • Develop a content strategy. What kind of content will you publish? How often will you publish? Who will create your content?
  • Create engaging content. Ensure your content is interesting, informative, and relevant to your audience.
  • Start building an audience. Promote your news organization and share content on social media, email, and other channels.
  • Engage with your audience. Respond to comments and questions, and encourage your audience to share your content.

Month 3: Growth and Outreach

  • Grow your content. Continue to publish high-quality content that is relevant to your audience.
  • Grow your platform. Expand your reach by publishing on new platforms, such as podcasts, newsletters, and videos.
  • Grow your audience. Continue to promote your content and engage with your audience.
  • Do additional outreach. Attend events, speak to community groups, and partner with other organizations to raise awareness of your news organization.

Month 4, 5, and 6: Revenue Generation

  • Paid subscriptions. Offer paid subscriptions to your news organization.
  • Partnerships. Partner with other organizations to generate revenue.
  • Grants. Apply for grants to support your news organization.
  • Collaboration with existing newsrooms. Collaborate with other news organizations to share resources and expertise.

Other Resources For Newsrooms

In addition to our own grants, there are many other resources out there for newsrooms and reporters that need assistance. Our Executive Director, Rashad would be happy to work with you on an application, even if you've never written a grant before. Feel free to shoot him an email.