Military Times announced a partnership with iPublish Media Solutions to offer a small-to-medium business guide free of charge to veterans and military families. The purpose of this site is to encourage military families and other patriotic Americans to shop at these veteran-owned businesses; also known as Veteran Service Organizations (VSO).

According to Mort Greenberg, SVP of Sales for Sightline Media, the parent company of Military Times, the free VSO guide is one of four “Spotlight” initiatives aimed to give back to the military and veteran communities.

Military Times, an almost 80-year-old brand, is “considered the USA Today” for the military, covering day-to-day defense issues for six branches of service including Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force, Coast Guard and now Space Force. The newspapers are available in print on all active military installations, in addition to online.

The site is available to any veteran or military family, offering the opportunity on the website for the VSO to place a free listing in the guide, whether recruitment, real estate or sales.

Military Times donates advertising to VSOs which has supported the community for the last three years. They include organizations that guarantee full college tuition for children of fallen patriots and the Wounded Warrior Projects. By mid-2021 they donated more than $2 million in free media, Greenberg said, including print, digital, social and email.

The projects were elected in communication with the VSOs to find out what kind of promotion they required. The four main Spotlight initiatives include the Spotlight, which offers free obituaries for any veteran who dies. They are placed by family on Military Times website via iPublish’s AdPortal Obituaries self-service software. Because military families are serving across the globe and come from communities around the United States, a special print and digital publication that serves people around the world versus in a single area is especially beneficial.

A second initiative, “Business Spotlight” promotes businesses owned by veterans. A key issue for veterans is transitioning from military to civilian life. So marketing support is one way to help with the transition.

The Classifieds Spotlight that launches this month will serve 2000 veteran owned businesses this year, Greenberg said.

A final Networking Spotlight, is in the works, with the aim of providing live meetups between business leaders and veterans interested in going into business or developing new careers.

“We’ve been working on this for six to eight months,” Greenberg said. No documentation will be required to place the ads, he said. The project is based on trust.

Military Times has about 20 million unique monthly users, and 42 journalists. It has not seen a drop in revenue in the last 14 months, Greenberg said.