Last week I introduced one of the easiest ways to create an “authority platform” for yourself – via an online magazine. No matter what the online business model, I still hear people ask, “Does this still work today?” Absolutely. The tools used to build anything online are getting better (and more affordable) all the time, too.
ORGANIC “SEED TRAFFIC”
The easiest way to get off to a fast start is by starting creating a publication for a market you’re already connected to. From there, you simple announce the launch of your magazine to this market. For example, consider your current memberships (online or offline), social media groups you frequent, current business affiliations and so forth. Don’t forget to do the same for each of the writers involved with your project. They, too, have groups they’re already affiliated with. Realize that starting from scratch doesn’t have to literally be – starting from scratch. Use every possible connection or affiliation you have as the “seed” to get things off to a faster start.
Most people undervalue a lifetime worth of contacts they’ve accumulated. If you really want to get the word out, there may be more avenues already available to you than you actually realize. Most people can’t see the forest for the trees.
It’s amazing how often people will neglect asking for help from family, friends and associates. Let me put it this way, unless you’ve already worn out your welcome in this area, why not ask for assistance? At the very least, these people may be able to connect you with people who can help you get the word out.
When I launched my first online magazine, I was a member of a large forum of people in that particular space. I let people know about the project months before it was launched. Did it make a difference? You bet it did.
The fastest method to grow any type of website is by using paid traffic methods. As of this writing, Facebook is probably the most cost effective way for most people to generate targeted traffic to a website or specific offer.
Like other types of online businesses, building a list of readers, subscribers or fans is the best way to ensure the traffic you initially generate returns to your site again and again – week after week and month after month. If you don’t know anything about buying Facebook ads, there are plenty of videos and free courses available online. The great thing about Facebook ads is – you can start with a very small budget and test the waters.
If you have a larger budget, you can outsource the management of your ad campaigns. Here’s an example: http://www.adventureppc.com/
Their services start at about $400 per month.
Everyone’s different. Some people wouldn’t dream of outsourcing the control of their ad campaigns to someone else while others see it as a no-brainer.
Buying targeted traffic increases the chances of “getting it right” the first time. What I mean by that is, you have a much better chance of finding the people who are truly interested in your topic or niche. That’s the first step. After that, your content will have to convert them into fans of your publication. Getting traffic, however, is the first step.
SECURING YOUR ONLINE PUBLICATION
Having a backup plan is for your site is crucial. Before I learned about tools like Wordfence, iThemes Security (WordPress security plugins), Brute Force Attacks and Captchas, I basically flew by the seat of my pants. Fortunately, nothing bad happened back then.
Today, things are a little more complex than they were back then.
At the very least, install one security plugin and watch a few videos showing you the basics of securing your site. Also, consider using two forms of backup (just in case one doesn’t work for whatever reason). You can always back your entire site up through your Cpanel if your webhost provides you with one.
I backup each site several times a month and keep 3 month’s worth of backups – just to be safe.
Another option is to pay someone to handle all the above for you. Then, all you have to do is focus on writing and marketing.
YOU CAN SUCCEED, BUT NOT WITHOUT FOCUS
Let me conclude by saying, “Focus is your friend.” A magazine, like a blog, requires that you continue to publish on a regular schedule, whatever you pre-determine regular to be. That means, taking into account the things that can potentially sidetrack you and slow things down. That includes holidays, vacations, etc. You need to have a backup plan in place. Maybe even a few filler-articles kept in the wings just in case someone misses a deadline.
Most online publications curate content from other sources in their niche. This, along with the original content you produce, can be the winning combination your market is looking for! One of the things I really enjoy about the online magazine model is the fact that you’re part of a team. In other words, there’s accountability, support and a common goal that’s shared.
All you need is a small group to get started. Here’s a link to one of mine: http://www.mycookingmagazine.com
If you think this is something you’d like to get started with, let me know. I welcome your thoughts and feedback.