Go Beyond A Blogging Business: Start Your Own Magazine

Blogging is one of the most enjoyable ways to start a freelance career. It’s something that doesn’t take much practice, nor does it take a large investment. It’s how many people are getting their careers started in the world of writing. They pick a subject they enjoy, they write about it, and then they slowly get multiple income streams from affiliate programs and advertising revenue. It’s easy to start, it’s fun, and it can lead to a number of different careers.

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However, there are people that chose to remain bloggers. They don’t take offers from other writers to write for their blogs, they don’t take offers to write for a publication, and they don’t turn their job into a full-time writer that focuses on physical books. This is because, to a blogger, their identity is closely linked with the content itself. In other words, they believe that the connection they have with their audience and the expertise they have on their subject is what makes them money.

But one of the more popular options that some bloggers have been turning to is to create a magazine. Magazines can basically be about anything. You could create a magazine that talks about video games, you could write about food, or even start a publication that focuses on business. Whatever your blog is about, you can probably turn it into a magazine with little to no effort. In short, it’s the perfect option for bloggers and writers who love to entertain and interact with their reader but want to take it a step further.

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Step 1: Gathering ideas

The first thing you want to do is think of a subject. For instance, you might be an expert on movies, you might enjoy gardening or maybe you’re great at web design. Whatever your forte is, you should focus on that as a starting point. Next, think about ways you can diversify your subject. For instance, if you want to talk about music, then you could have multiple different categories in your magazine. It could start with reviews of latest pop music releases, then you could have a section on how to make your own music, and lastly there could be a segment on hardware reviews such as headphones, audio players and more.

The idea is to simply expand on your existing ideas. Think about all the blog posts you’ve written in the past and try to find various topics and subjects that you have covered. In most cases, you’ll be able to find a variety of different formats, topics and subjects that you enjoy writing about, and they can be converted into magazine equivalents.

Step 2: Identify your target audience

Next, you need to think about a target audience. In addition to the age demographic, you also need to think about industry, their careers, and interests. For instance, if you want to publish a magazine related to software, then you need to take into consideration who it’s for. Maybe you’re writing about software on computers. You could talk about the latest new software releases, different uses for the latest programs, and how to get the most out of their computers. Perhaps your software-related magazine is about programming. You could talk about different programming languages, how to get started with computer science and review different software packages that allow you to design software.

It’s important that you try and put yourself in the shoes of a reader. If you are trying to convert your existing blog into a magazine, then you should try and identify what your most popular articles are. These are probably the ones with the most views and responses, they try and get a feel for the types of readers you attract and capitalise on that.

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Step 3: Design and branding

Of course, a magazine won’t get very far without a solid design. Unlike your blog, you can’t use a single layout for every article, page or column. It has to be unique, and there needs to be a lot of different variation between each issue. It can be useful to hire a dedicated artist or designer to help you out, but for now, you should stick to using a magazine cover template. This will help you get started with the basic layout and then when you hire an artist, you can further refine these designs so that your publication doesn’t look amateurish.

You’re also going to need a fantastic name for your magazine. If you don’t have something snappy to use, then it’s a good idea to brainstorm some names with people you know. They could be future team members, advisors or even just friends, but once you land on a name that sticks, you’ll feel it in your gut.

Step 4: Funding

You aren’t going to get very far with your own magazine if you don’t look for the right places to receive funding. First, you’re going to need a business plan to pitch to your investors. Make sure that you add as much detail as possible, but practice your speech so that it doesn’t become long and drawn out. Make sure you take a note of your competition. You don’t want to pitch an idea that is already done to death, and you don’t want to start a publication when there is already a rival that has dominated the market.

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Step 5: Building a team

A designer is probably the least of your worries when it comes to recruiting. You’re also going to need a team of writers to help you create content, you’ll need marketing experts, accountants, and even proofreaders to ensure you don’t have mistakes in your content. Alternatively, if you plan to go the physical media route instead of publishing online, then you’ll also need to find a printer who is willing to sign a contract with you.

Step 6: Launch a website and spread the word

Now that you have a team, plenty of ideas and your first issue is in the works, you need to create an online presence. You can do this by promoting it on your existing blog if you have one, but you can also think about using social media to promote your new publication. Keep in mind your audience when you advertise—the last thing you want is to advertise to the wrong audience and make a fool out of yourself!

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