JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Planning on buying some gear for your favorite team over these holidays?
Maybe we'll be able to help you, even as you help us.
Because of our business partnership with Fanatics.com, the industry leader in sports merchandise, we're able to offer you that company's excellent discounts -- and almost-always free shipping -- right here through our site/app. And the dual benefit, at least if you're among the readers who kind of like what we do here, is that our company gets 15 percent from every purchase. So if you buy a $100 jersey, $15 of that comes to us.
That might not sound like much, but every little bit bolsters the bottom line here, so we're always looking.
Thank you in advance if you choose this route.
OUR OWN MERCH, TOO!
We're also selling, on a separate platform, our own DK Sports hoodie, if only because we legitimately have a lot of people asking about these. It's charcoal gray, it's super-soft and comfortable -- I'm pretty sure I live half my life in one, you might have noticed -- and it's available in all sizes from small to 2XL.
The price is $49.99, with free shipping.
Be the not-at-all-coolest kid on your block!
HOW ABOUT THEM BUCS?
This is the time of year for football and hockey, but the Pirates might have been our big winner here this week, and I'd be remiss if not underscoring that.
Our No. 1 file for the week was John Perrotto's coverage of the five-player trade at an eye-popping 16,603, no small feat on a week with the Le'Veon Bell and Carl Hagelin developments. Overall, the Pirates drew 40,643, thanks to John's flight to California for the General Managers Meetings and other original content. The Live Qs were kicking, too.
That's really cool. I like to think of baseball as latently popular in our town.
OUR HOLIDAY SPECIAL
If you missed it last weekend, we're publishing our first-ever book -- “Cartoon Canon: An Illustrated History of Pittsburgh Sports,” a beautiful coffee-table-style assembly of 52 of staff artist Rob Ullman's finest pieces — and offering it to anyone buying a gift subscription at zero additional charge!
Here are the three ways to get one:
• One-year gift subscription: Same price as always, $39.99, and you get a softcover version of the book. Shipping is free.
• Three-year gift subscription: Same price as always, $87, and you also get a deluxe hardcover version of the book personally signed by Ullman. Shipping is free.
• Ultimate gift subscription: This one is nuts. It'll be $225, and the recipient gets a five-year subscription, the deluxe hardcover version of the book personally signed by Ullman, a separate autographed bookplate of an Ullman sketch of Pittsburgh's all-time greatest athletes, plus one of those foam Lunatic Bricks (yes, we still have 'em), plus one of the aforementioned DK Sports hoodies. Even here, shipping is free.
(We've actually sold three of these already!)
LET'S MEET ... IN JACKSONVILLE!
We're having a PNC Main Street Meetup tonight in Jacksonville, on the eve of the Steelers' game there: It'll be at 7 p.m. inside the Starbucks in Orange Park, Fla., located at 1963 Park Ave.
Dale Lolley, Matt Sunday and I will all attend, and I've already heard from a handful of you eager to get together. Should be a good one.
PUSH FOR 500 VETERANS COMPLETE!
Now that our readers achieved the goal of filling the Veterans Fund -- one-year gift subscriptions for vets worldwide -- all the way up to 500, the onus is on us to make sure all 500 find a match. (Sorry, your generosity outpaced us!) We had three more veterans request free subscriptions yesterday, so we've still got 109 to give out. If you know a vet who'd like one, that form is here.
• As promised, we met face-to-face with Build In Motion to find out what's up with the delay on logins/alerts. What we learned: They were ready to pull the trigger on the full update three weeks ago upon encountering a potential conflict with another mechanism in our platform that had just been recently updated by the manufacturer. So, yeah. We're looking at another couple weeks.
• We also discussed an aggressive initiative toward improved speed on all devices, but that obviously can't get started until the big project is complete. We're aware it takes too long to load our home page, believe me.
• Can't stress this enough, but use the app. It's where we put almost all of our tech resources, it's got the best version of our Live Feed, and it's free:
SEEKING BUSINESS PARTNERS
Currently available for sponsorships: (Some) Steelers, (some) Penguins, Pitt, Duquesne, Penn State, West Virginia, Carter's Classroom, Friday Insider, Stats 'N' At, Wilkes-Barre Watch and Wheeling Watch. This is our updated media kit for much more detail. If you're interested in connecting with our large, passionate following, email me at Dali@DKPittsburghSports.com. -- Dali Kovacevic
BACK TO BUSINESS
• Subscriptions are at 37,456. That's minus-58 over the past week.
• We had 573,217 page views over the past week. Our most-hit article -- exempting live files -- was John's coverage of the Pirates' five-player trade at 16,603. The Penguins accounted for 99,209 of our page views, the Steelers 86,420, the Pirates 40,643, Pitt 19,446, Penn State 2,817, Duquesne 2,547 and all the rest were below 1,000.
• We're at 29,215 (+4) page likes on Facebook, we're at 29,038 (+18) followers on Twitter, and we're at 9,037 (+19) followers on Instagram. These figures are just for our official company account on each platform, not for us as individuals.
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