Traveling around our country, I have seen many community messages over the years. These publications range from newspapers to newsletters every two months and everything in between. A frequently asked question from friends and acquaintances: “Should I publish my own community journal?” is a difficult question, and the answer depends on several decisive factors. In this article, I’ll talk about some things to consider if you’re going to publish a community log.
The publishing world has changed dramatically with the advent of the Internet and online publications. The number of daily and weekly newspapers in the United States has been steadily and dramatically declining over the past 10 years. In many ways, this decrease is due to the fact that readers prefer to receive information from online sites almost in real time, rather than from large print newspapers. In addition, newspapers across the country have calmed down over the years, believing that readers will read whatever they want to print. Unfortunately for them, this did not happen, and as a result newspapers across the country are closed.
Magazines, on the other hand, continued to grow during this period, especially niche magazines that specialize in a particular topic or industry such as sports, cooking, automotive, etc. The most successful publications were focused on a particular hyperlocal community, such as a big city area with common interests, a small town, a planned community of masters, etc. these types of magazines are primarily relevant only to those who live and/or work in these communities, and therefore usually have very loyal local readers. In most cases, these magazines are provided to readers free of charge and must be supported by advertisers. Some publications are sent out directly, others add up, and others combine these methods.
An effective public journal should publish community-oriented content that gives people news and information that affects their daily lives that they cannot obtain from other sources. It should also provide valuable information about the development of local businesses, giving local entrepreneurs a competitive advantage in their own communities. Content should also include relevant columns written by local writers who know and know their fields, such as health and well-being, children’s sports, local authorities, schools, places of worship, etc.
In most cases, the cost of producing and distributing publications is paid by advertisers, as most local public magazines are free publications. An effective public magazine can be an invaluable marketing tool for local businesses because it allows them to directly target their most likely potential customers, people who live and work nearby. Research after study found that people were more likely to visit shops, restaurants and services within five miles of their location. However, many publications make the mistake of targeting too much territory, which contradicts this premise. By properly targeting a particular community, a well-designed public magazine can be a very attractive advertising tool for local businesses.
The ideal magazine for a hyper-local community should have a tripartite approach to distribution so that it can be in the hands of anyone who lives and works in a particular community.
- Mail the magazine to almost every home or office in a particular market.
- Choose large advertisers who will distribute magazines in their establishment.
- Hand out copies on shelves in important and lively places in the community.
The combination of these distribution methods should allow you to pass on your logs to people who live and work in the community, making magazines even more valuable to advertisers.
Owning and managing a community magazine can be a very rewarding experience.