How to Start a Newspaper Agency. The most important thing to consider is why you want to begin a newspaper agency, and what your goals will be. You may want to help foster clear communication among the people of a certain area, or you may like the idea of sharpening the writing and investigative skills of yourself and others. In either case, keep in mind the realities of such a venture.
Determine your time commitments from the start. You need to think about getting advertising, obtaining loans, setting up a budget and purchasing supplies, recruiting and paying reporters and printing and distributing your newspapers.
Decide how many people you will really need for your business. With modern-day technology, it is possible that a handful of people can now run such a business, so your decision about numbers will depend on your needs and on what you are trying to accomplish. Lay out the scope of your news gathering so that you have a clear idea of the people you'll need on staff.
Find funding. As with many other businesses, if you aren't wealthy enough to cover the paper, printing and distribution costs on your own, you'll have to find funding in the form of advertisers. Determine the price you'll charge for ads that cover a quarter-page, a half-page and a full page, then get the word out to all the local businesses. If your paper will cover news of great interest to the public, these advertisers will be likely to sign on.
Check with a local banker to set up a business checking account from the beginning. You may also ask your banker for specific information on what books need to be kept to monitor your expenses and your income from the business. It would also be helpful to set up a business relationship with an accountant that you trust to help you keep things going at an even pace.
Plan your work. Get together with your business partners and devise a detailed plan. This plan should include concrete information on what all your business goals are, and each of the steps you plan to take to reach those goals. Take into account every aspect of the business: procurement of supplies, deadlines for news-gathering and printing, costs associated with each aspect of the process and payroll demands. A major cost to consider is that for printing. How many newspapers do you want to print, how much per page will Kinko's or some other copy shop charge, who will take charge of distributing the papers and how much gasoline money will need to be planned for.
Steel yourself for the demands on your time and your emotions. While you may be passionate about writing, or sharing the truth with those around you, you also need to build your core of persistence and dogged determination. This is a business, so you will need to treat it with the care and discipline necessary to make a success of things.
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