Exclusive: KCTV, Kansas City Star Partner

[UPDATED] Meredith's KCTV Kansas City has partnered with the daily Kansas City Star newspaper to expand content and revenue potential for both media outlets in DMA No. 31. KCTV, a CBS affiliate, is the exclusive provider of weather news to the newspaper, says KCTV VP/General Manager Bobby Totsch.

"We took the two best news organizations in Kansas City and combined them to give consumers and what we call ‘viewsers' more in-depth coverage of the market," says Totsch. "It gives us the opportunity to go deeper than we normally might on a story."

McClatchy owns the KC Star.

Star VP/Editor Mike Fannin said weather is the centerpiece of the partnership--KCTV now provides the forecasts on the paper's weather page, at the rear of the Sports section, as well as on a revamped microsite. But he added that KCTV is a vital newsgathering partner too. He cited a story dominating this week's paper, about corruption in the Kansas City (KS) police force, that both forces worked on together. "It was a pretty hot news story this week, and they were very helpful," said Fannin. "It's a good example right out of the gate."

The partnership started in earnest this week, with KCTV talking it up on air. It will extend through the year, and likely beyond.

Totsch said the KC Star's mammoth reach on the Web, including its strong presence in online search (it owns the traffic-grabbing KansasCity.com URL), made the partnership particularly attractive to the broadcaster.

Totsch said the pact enables KCTV to bring its content to a wider swath of the local population.

"We're working together to create more news and marketing and revenue opportunities," he said.

Fannin says it's off to a good start. "We've taken good initial steps," he says, "and we hope to strengthen the parternship down the road."

Michael Malone

Michael Malone, senior content producer at B+C/Multichannel News, covers network programming, including entertainment, news and sports on broadcast, cable and streaming; and local broadcast television. He hosts the podcasts Busted Pilot, about what’s new in television, and Series Business, a chat with the creator of a new program, and writes the column “The Watchman.” He joined B+C in 2005. His journalism has also appeared in The New York Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Playboy and New York magazine.