Story leads: monthly content inspiration for publishers

Story leads: monthly content inspiration for publishers

What you’ll find on this page… Story ideas for the month or year ahead, key news industry events for your calendar, a little prompt on revenue streams you might want to think about this month, and a list of useful government and helpline references to refer your readers to, or to draw upon yourself.

Coming up this month: August

Theme/eventStory leads
Winter• How to spark joy this winter: our staff favourite comfort recipes.
• Where to buy the best winter goodies in the area, e.g hot water bottles, local tea.
• The cafes in the area selling the best hot chocolate.
• Warming your heart over winter: volunteer work available in your area (e.g soup kitchen, op shops).
National Missing Persons Week
August 1 – 6
• Raise awareness for missing persons cases still active around your area/in your state.
Wear It Purple Day
August 30
• Explainer piece on what this day means. Profile individuals who are part of the LGBTQIA+ community on how they believe this celebration affects the youth (you can link to the LINA Helpline document attached to this page).
Industry events
Women in Media National Conference
August 9
The Women in Media National Conference has established itself as the must-attend event featuring high-calibre speakers, honest discussion, and fresh ideas that push the boundaries of the industry. 
Asia Pacific News Media Summit
August 29 – 30
This is a free online summit, where you can learn about the latest media strategies, innovation and experiments driving news media sustainability and growth.
Revenue ideas:
Approach cafes/restaurants/gift stores for a sponsored post mentioning their winter specials

Plan for the year ahead

Browse through every month for the upcoming year for events, related article ideas, revenue ideas and industry events.

September 2024
Theme/eventStory leads
Start of spring• Best local gardens in your area to tour.
• Profiling a local gardening shop/gardening enthusiast and asking them what to plant over Spring.
• A local flower guide: publishing a guided tour of your local area with all of the local flowers that readers can find on their journey.
• Local bars in your area with outdoor seating for when the weather gets warmer.
• Best camping spots/walking trails in the area.
Dementia and Alzheimers Awareness Month• Is your local area/community equipped to look after those with dementia and alzheimers?
• What services exist? What further funding/initiatives might be needed?
• Are there any local initiatives that are making a positive difference for those with dementia and alzheimers?
Check out LINA’s shop-talk on solutions journalism here, and links to Government contacts via the document attached below.
Industry events
DigiMarCon Asia Pacific
September 20
Digital marketing, media and advertising conference and exhibition, held virtually.
Content Byte Summit
September 12 – 14
Where journalists, copywriters and content producers meet. Hear from top experts. Get business-changing tips. Find your people. Hosted in Sydney.
Media Innovation Week
September 23 – 29
Future-proofing sustainable news brands in the sustainability capital of Europe, Helsinki.
ONA24: Atlanta
September 18 – 21
Brings together creative minds to advance leadership and innovation in news.
Revenue ideas:
Dealing with hay fever tips, sponsored by local chemist (with mentions of any relevant products they have)
October 2024

Event/themeStory leads
31 October
• Best halloween activities: Local spooky tours, movies at cinemas, where to go trick or treating.
• Feature piece on a historical event in your area, or the story behind a nearby cemetery.
• Profiling businesses doing Halloween themed activities.
World mental health month

World mental health day
October 10
• Speak to local community groups/organisations/services about the work they’re doing to improve the mental health of the community
• Put together a self care resource list for your readers, with activities they can do locally to improve mental health, e.g walking trails, wellness/yoga/meditation spots etc
Check out LINA’s shop-talks on solutions journalism and guidelines for reporting on mental health here.
Make sure to link to LINA’s Helpline document below.
International Day of Older Persons
October 1
• How does your community celebrate the older generations?
• Is there a local figure you can interview about how the community has changed?
International Chefs Day
October 20
• Profile a local chef and the restaurant they work for
Industry event
CBAA Annual Conference
October 17 – 19
The CBAA Annual Conference is the premier event for community broadcasters in Australia. This year it will be hosted on the Gold Coast.
MINDS Conference
October 10 – 11
An event aimed at an exchange of thoughts and experiences, for getting impulses for new business as well as the chance for exploring collaboration in many ways. Hosted in Berlin.
Revenue ideas:
Shoutout a local chef in your area, and the restaurant they work for as a partnership.
November 2024
Event/themeStory leads
Lead up to Christmas/school holidays• Christmas markets in the area.
• Best places to do your Christmas shopping.
• Where you can volunteer over Christmas (local charities etc).
• How to celebrate the end of the school year with your kids.
• Summer holiday getaways in the region you can plan for.
Remembrance Day
November 11
• Profile any local stories/individuals around this day.
• Highlight any services that may be happening.
International Day for the Elimination
of Violence Against Women
November 25
• Speak to the local services/shelters in your area.
• Is enough being done on a funding and/or community level?
Make sure to link to LINA’s Helpline document below.
International Accounting Day
November 10
• Celebrate your local accounting firms.
• Top 10 accounting tips from an accountant (as a sponsored piece).
• Profile an accounting business (as a sponsored piece).
Industry events
November 23
The Walkley Foundation celebrates and supports great Australian journalism. Hosted in Sydney.
AANZCA 2024 Conference
November 25 – 28
The conference theme is ‘Pause’ and invites attendees to consider the benefits of pausing during moments of global crisis and disciplinary change. Hosted in Melbourne.
Revenue ideas:
Sponsored content from a local accounting firm (see story ideas above).
December 2024
Event/themeStory leads
Summer holidays• What to do on a hot day in your area.
• Taste testing the best ice creameries in the area.
• Activities running at the local pool or park over summer.
• Approach local activity centres to sponsor content. Sponsored content from retailers selling air conditioning, fridges ect.
Lead-up to Christmas• Christmas light map using LINA research repository. Check out the DPA CMS Webinar here.

New Years Eve
31 December
• Approach local pubs, clubs, restaurants about their New Years Eve offers.
• Recipe ideas for NYE parties (sponsored content by local grocery store, restaurant, cafe, bakery).
• Top 10 songs to play at your NYE party (sponsored by local music store/bar/entertainment venues)
• Approach local gyms/fitness centres to sponsor ‘New Years Resolution’ content.
Wrap up of the year• Timeline the big events that happened in your area over the year, and include achievements your publication has had: you can mock-up a calendar using your free Canva subscription.

Look ahead to 2025….

January 2025
Theme/eventStory leads
1 January 
New Years Day
• Your publications’ New Year’s resolutions.
26 January
Invasion Day
Australia Day
• What is the Indigenous history in your area? Profile how and when settlers came into your area, which Indigenous peoples were living there before? What are some important Indigenous sites in your area?
• Profile your community on what Australia Day means to them: Should it be celebrated? What does it mean for a multicultural Australia?
Check out LINA’s shop-talk on Referendum reporting.
29 January
Chinese Lunar New Year
• Profile the best Chinese restaurants in your area that readers can visit to celebrate the New Year.
30 January
School holidays
• Compile a list of the best local activities for kids, i.e library events, parks, ice creameries
• Prepping for back to school season: Where to stock up on stationary, fun snacks for lunch boxes, study spots in your area.
Revenue ideas:
Include targeting advertising on articles like ‘lunch box ideas’, approach your local grocery store
Approach local gyms/fitness centres to sponsor ‘New Years Resolution’ content
February 2025

Theme/eventStory leads
Valentine’s Day
14 February
• Interview locals on how they met their partners.
• Local date night ideas in your area (galleries, breweries, cinema).
• Date night restaurant list.
International Day of Women and Girls in Science (UN)
8 February
• Profile local science research initiatives or girls at your local school about what science means to them.
Industry event
Media Subscriptions Summit
26 February
The world’s largest event on digital subscriptions for a new era of news media, hosted in New York. You can find the details here.
Revenue ideas:
Approach local businesses to help put together ‘Valentine’s Day’ bundles
March 2025
Theme/eventStory leads
International Women’s Day
8 March
• Profile a female-owned business in your area, or female leaders from your community.
• Interview locals about the important women in their lives.
• Profile two women about what female friendship means to them.
• Profile a community group hosting a Women’s Day related event.
First day of Ramadan
11 March
• Profile a selection of Muslim businesses in your community.
• Interview some Muslim members of your community about what Ramadan means to them.
St Patrick’s Day
17 March
• Profile the best pubs/bars in your area that serve Guinness.
Harmony Day
18 March
• Research which nationalities you have represented in your local area, and when the largest ethnic groups migrated to the area.
• Compile a list of multicultural restaurants for your readers.
Industry event
Media Tech Expo
5 March
Experience the latest technology and industry expertise for media professionals, technologists, and engineers hosted in Sydney. Note: Expo is free, conference is paid. You can find more details here.
April 2025
Theme/eventStory leads
25 April
• Profile any ANZACs/descendants of ANZACs living in your community.
• Share details of any dawn services happening in your area.
Easter• Share Easter activities happening in your community, e.g. Church services, Easter egg hunts.
• Profile where to buy the best hot cross buns.
• Share nearby getaways or staycations your readers might go on over the long weekend.
Eid• Find a local family celebrating the holiday and profile them about what traditions they follow, and what the holiday means to them.
Passover• Find a local family celebrating the holiday and profile them about what traditions they follow, and what the holiday means to them.
Daylight savings ends
First Sunday of the month
• Cosy weeknight activities for winter (the local cinema, a cosy local restaurant, shops that offer late night shopping).
World Veterinary Day
26 April
• Profile your local vet. Have them write a short Do’s and Don’ts for pet care. Get the local pet store/ supply store to sponsor it.
May 2025
Theme/eventStory leads
Annual Commonwealth Budget
Second Tuesday in May
• What the budget means for the people in your area, saving money tips. Speak with community groups, business leaders and any individuals directly impacted by the budget.
End of Financial Year• A day of shopping in the area: where all of the best sales are.
Reconciliation week
27 May
• Profile an Indigenous owned business in your area, or in Australia, that has products which can be shipped to your area.
• Research and write about the Indigenous history in your area; What languages were spoken? Are there important landmarks nearby that your readers could visit?
• Commission an article from an Indigenous freelance writer.
• Share what your publication is doing to amplify and support Indigenous voices.
Day of the midwife
5 May
• What services does your community have, in relation to pregnancy care?
World Password Day
First Thursday of the Month
• Contact the local IT services, or computer/electronics stores in your community
• ‘Ways to stay safe online’ sponsored content
Industry event
Mumbrella 360An immersive three-day event, where you’ll gain expert knowledge, network with industry leaders, and experience the future of media and marketing taking flight, hosted in Sydney. More details can be found here.
NewswiredA conference for innovators in digital publishing, hosted in London. More details can be found here.
June 2025
Theme/eventStory leads
Start of winter• Share a list of activities for a rainy day in your area (cinema, art gallery etc).
• A day of op shopping: a list of where they all are.
• Arts and crafts ideas, and which shops in the area stock the necessary elements.
Christmas in July prep• Christmas activities available in your area.
• Cafes or restaurants offering Christmas specials.
• A list of shops that sell gifts.
Pride month• Speak to local services and community groups.
• If you’ve already covered issues previously, highlight them to your readers.
Global wind day
15 June
• Are there wind farms in or planned for your area? If you’ve done stories previously on wind farms, take this opportunity to highlight them for the community
World drug day
26 June
• What drug and alcohol services are in your community?
• If this is an issue particularly relevant to your area, consider speaking with local health services and politicians about the issue
Check out LINA’s shop-talk with Mindframe on mental health reporting here.
July 2025

Theme/eventStory leads
Winter• Share a list of activities for a rainy day in your area (could be your local cinema, art gallery, best cafe for a hot chocolate, bookstore etc)
7 July
• Profile an Indigenous owned business in your area, or in Australia, that has products which can be shipped to your area.
• Research and write about the Indigenous history in your area; What languages were spoken? Are there important landmarks nearby that your readers could visit?
• Commission an article from an Indigenous freelance writer.
• Share what your publication is doing to amplify and support Indigenous voices.
Christmas in July• How to celebrate in your area; Which businesses are taking part? Where can readers go for light shows, lunch or other Christmas in July festivities?
Industry events
Kennedy awards
July 26
These awards are hosted in Sydney, with finalists announced in July and the gala presentation hosted in August. They are a national media awards program, and have been running since 2011.
Revenue ideas:
Approach businesses who are holding Christmas in July events to advertise on your site
Sponsored content that gives school holiday activity ideas (and add in local attractions/community centres/activities with materials easily bought from local stores)

Here we’ve compiled a list of useful contacts for you to reference in related articles

LINA keeps this list as current as possible, however please check links before publication. Let us know if you spot anything out of date so we can update.

Helpful mailing lists for publishers to subscribe to

To receive regular updates, alerts and useful media information around local government, it’s worth subscribing to these mailing lists. LINA keeps this list as current as possible, but let us know if there are any that need updating.

SES: State Emergency Service
News/media website page
Campaigns website page
News hub site: search for press releases
Media movements newsletter: subscribe
Bureau of Meteorology
Subscribe to receive BOM updates
Optional media releases/alerts for journalists
Your local council media alerts
For information on how to find your local council, check the useful contacts list above. To find their mailing list/media information, try scrolling to the bottom of their website, and finding a headline like ‘media contact’ or ‘news’. If you can’t find anything under your council website, your local MP may have a mailing list on their own website.
State parliament media releases and alerts
Subscribe to the media release mailing list.
Subscribe to the parliament e-bulletin.
New South Wales
Find media releases and statements here.
Subscribe to your chosen parliamentary service mailing list.
Northern Territory
Subscribe to your parliamentary committee mailing list.
Australian Capital Territory
Find media releases here.
South Australia
Find media releases here.
Find media releases here.
Western Australia
Find the latest media statements here.
Find the latest government announcements here.
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