Why don’t you map out that list?

I’m a believer in maps. I think they’re helpful to the reader and they’re pretty easy to produce. GateHouse papers are now producing “lists,” many of which also lend themselves to a map. Tell the reader something useful and fun AND show them where to find it.

Google Maps is the easiest way to put together an online map. You can use your Gmail account to create and store your maps. I wrote about using Google Maps before. You can also click here for a quick lesson. offers helpful ideas for lists. We think lists are “a great way for newspapers to reach into community¬† interests by focusing on time- and location-specific information your readers love…” according to the 2015 Inner Circle handbook.

Readers like easily digestible nuggets of information about topics they enjoy, such as food, shopping, vacations and sports. Themed lists that focus on your community are pretty useful and fun.

My suggestion is you kick it up a notch by including a map.

Here are some list ideas included at (Content Ideas > List Ideas) that cry out for a map:

Historical facts you never knew about your town (assuming some or all include locations in town)

Local first date ideas that aren’t dinner and a movie

Where to enjoy the great outdoors

Cool spots to warm up this winter

Great places to get a helper’s high

Perfect local venues to say ‘I do’

And those are the ones on the first page of ideas. They pretty much all lend themselves to a map.

Once you have the addresses of each spot (which you should for the list, anyway), it would take maybe 15 minutes to throw a map together. Grab the embed code and include it in your list article or link to it using the URL.

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