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|Original Message Added : 18 Sep 2010|
My magazine 'Look West Cheltenham' will be delivered to 5000 homes in an area which people have the pre-conception is a deprived and relatively poor area! I live in this area and certainly there are some pockets which could be viewed as 'deprived' but there are also some really nice places where people obviously look after their homes and take pride in their area.
I have had a professionally produced flyer done and so far sent it to hundreds of local businesses and tradespeople. My website is www.lookwestcheltenham.com (it's not wizzy and fancy but I did it myself!). I have had a very poor response to all the leaflets I have sent out, and as I work at my 'other job' during the day, have very little time to get on the telephone to potential advertisers. I have visited the local shops etc and whilst they all say "what a great idea, this is what the community needs, they are not commiting to become involved"!
The magazine will be a mixture of community news, events, services and local business advertising and produced monthly from November 10. To start with I am being realistic and as long as I can put out a good quality 16 page publication, this will help massively. I am worried though that time is ticking away and I will not even be able to cover the costs for a 16 page magazine for November!
I have no more funds to put into this and am already in the red, but I am determined as I feel the area really needs the service I am offering!
|Reply : 18 Sep 2010|
You say you feel that the area needs what you are offering but is your feeling supported with any research or commitment from potential readers or advertisers. i'm sorry to be blunt but it sounds as if you haven't and that no other magazine is prepared to commit to the area either .... does that tell a story?
So what do you do? You could offer free advertising to local companies in the first issue. It their ads work they will come back. Or you have to be able to convince advertisers that you will have enough readers that will spend on whatever is advertised. If the perception is that this is a deprived area ... and because you have only identified 5000 homes I think you have a real challenge.
The problem is you cannot successfully market advertising ... or any other product / service ... where there is no perception of a return on the advertisers investment.
I commend your commitment but based on what you say my advice would be to delay this project until you have defined a specific need and have commitment from potential advertisers ..... or redefine your target audience to another demographic.
|Reply : 18 Sep 2010|
Here's wishing you every Success!! Perhaps members will offer you a number of idea's
that will prove fruitful..One idea might be to approach a local baker with their recipe for
a Christmas Cake..etc..another from a garage about being prepared for Winter Motoring.
I am certain there are 1,001 ideas..Holidays VAT Free, might be another certainly the
growing trend to DIY..your selves!! Good Luck!!
|Reply : 18 Sep 2010|
|Reply : 24 Sep 2010|
You need people to keep hold of the issue for the whole month ( Offers From Businesses vouchers quizzes a bit of fun thrown in local help line numbers etc )
Keep to a limit of trades / services ( two of each ) Make them want to be in your mag ( sorry first come first served )
A review page good or bad feed back from their customers. This gets rid of the chaff and you build relationships with honesty and gives your publication integrity within the community
Offer a half page editorial for businesses that commit to say 3-6 months of Advertising at the start this should generate the income boost you will need while you get your footing
OH and foot work knocking those doors don't be shy of asking for commitment after all its in their best interest to advertise in your publication
AND GOOD LUCK
|Reply : 25 Sep 2010|
I am not going to give up and am sure that once I get the first one out there and through people doors it will start building from there. We have a maximum of no more than 5 of any trade advertising with the other magazines I work for and this does seem to work well. It will be nice to be in that position with mine.
Your advice has been very useful - thanks again! Debbie.
|Reply : 27 Oct 2010|
I have recently looked at your website and also sent you an email.
I previously ran three Community magazines in Poole, Dorset. I am aware how hard it can be to get up and going. However I have learned from my own expensive mistakes and from other people who also run very successful magazines.
I now work as a print consultant. In my role I deal with many new and well established publishers and try to assist them to make more profit from their magazines.
I would be really interested to see if we could meet up as I may be able to assist you with your magazine, no obligation to use us for printing it either!!
However, these magazines do work and there are plenty of untapped areas where magazines have not yet been launched, I believe you may have an area that is ripe for this kind of magazine. Although it is very difficult working at the start, like any business it can take time but the rewards are there if you take it easy. It is important to watch every penny.
Good luck and I hope to be able to speak with you soon.
|Reply : 6 Nov 2010|
Thanks for you constructive advice. I have now published and distributed the first edition of Look West Cheltenham and am encouraged with the response I have received to it from local residents and advertisers.
Long, long way to go and it certainly will take some persistence and hard work to make it pay for itself totally. Going to put my feet up now, having delivered 5000 magazines door to door this week just between my partner and myself, I am going to have a well earned rest. Can you give me any advice on the best distribution methods you came across when you were doing your magazines? ie, did you use local people or a distribution company to complete the whole job?