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  • #968333
    FlyOnTheWall
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    Seeking help / suggestions with launch of free local magazine

    I am investigating the feasibility of launching a free, local, promotional magazine. I think I’ve got a handle on most of it (e.g. target market, design and compilation, printing, likely advertisers, some content), but there’s a few areas where I could use some pointers / suggestions. If anyone has any experience with this sort of thing (as a publisher, contributor, or advertiser etc.), or just wants to share their thoughts, I’d love to hear your ideas!

    Specifically, I could do with some tips on such things as:

    • Ideas for distribution;
    • Do regular contributors of editorial normally pay (e.g. local accountants with a regular column on tax and financial planning issues)?
    • Alternatives to writing feature articles in-house;
    • Start with a smaller print run and build up over time, or bite the bullet and go out strong with a larger print run?
    • Best way to approach potential advertisers? (Especially considering there will be nothing to show them prior to the first edition…)

    Any thoughts appreciated :-)

    #1032539
    6572#deleted
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    With all of your ideas, you can show the potential advertisers a mock up and point out the best place for them to place their ads for maximum exposure. Do you have some articles written yet? Is the magazine just on general local goings on or based on a particular niche?

    Cheers

    Fiona

    #1032540
    Past-Member
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    You would definitely need to have a colour mockup to show prospective advertisers. A front and back page, and say 4 inner pages would suffice. What size are you thinking of? My suggestion would be a DL size (98mm x 210mm high) because it could also be posted in a standard DL envelope and would fit better in DL stands.

    From my understanding the advertising should pay for all of it and editorial should not have to be paid otherwise it becomes ‘advertorial’ which is another option you could sell. Advertorials must have ADVERTORIAL in small letters at top of page to indicate it is a paid editorial.

    If someone is writing a regular column for you, you should just say a nice ‘thank you’ and be glad that they don’t invoice you. So, no, they do not pay to be in the booklet unless it is an Advertorial.

    The problem is that there must be something to make prospects keep the booklet (eg magnet) – otherwise it becomes like much of the junk mail – something to recycle.

    Cheers.

    #1032541
    web3k
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    Re: Seeking help / suggestions with launch of free local magazine

    Some thoughts…

    • Ideas for distribution;

    Depending on where you are located, there are usually handbill distributors that walk the streets each week dropping collateral off. Some split business vs. residential distribution, generally have a minimum drop quantity and are not too expensive on the whole.

    • Do regular contributors of editorial normally pay (e.g. local accountants with a regular column on tax and financial planning issues)?

    If I were contributing content, I’d at the very least expect a discount for an advertisement. Some may expect it for free. If its good content that keeps the readership high, then it might be worth giving them some goodwill their way.

    • Alternatives to writing feature articles in-house;

    There are article websites which are ‘open source’ for lack of a better word. There’s no copyright on it the articles, can be republished without fees or royalties, however often can’t be modified. You could turn to local schools (tafes or unis) and see if they have public relations, marketing or art classes that would be interested to write articles on different topics. You could negotiate these on a no-fee basis provided you allow them to use that piece in their portfolios when jobs hunting etc – they might also ask for a reference in this case.

    • Start with a smaller print run and build up over time, or bite the bullet and go out strong with a larger print run?

    Things like this take time to build up, going out strong could see high costs without much in return.

    You could scale the distribution based on the income from the advertising (i.e. more ads, more distribution). This helps keep costs relatively under control, shows advertisers that if they continue to advertise and support, they’ll get a bigger reach over time. You could start with distributing into coffee shops and the like, see what the response is and gauge from there your distribution size?

    • Best way to approach potential advertisers? (Especially considering there will be nothing to show them prior to the first edition…)

    As others have indicated, you might need a mock-up to show. You’ll also need to be ready to show statistics like coverage areas, distribution size, costs/sizing for ads. Face to face selling for this type of stuff might generate a better outcome. Shows you’re a local, shows your keen and not a large, faceless printing company that is going to rip of locals. An advertiser pack with a the bits and pieces mentioned above is always handy in case the potential advertiser doesn’t have time, or isn’t interested at the time. They can at least think about it later.

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