Lifestyle magazines often include articles and editorials in the areas of fashion, travel, food, trends and general pop culture. Starting your own lifestyle magazine allows you to share your creative vision with the public through photographs, articles or interviews. While the magazine business is extremely competitive, you can start your own lifestyle magazine on a small budget, depending on the platform you use. The key to starting a successful magazine is to blend creativity, business savvy, organization and a plan for the long term.
Decide on a target market. Think about whether your magazine will be aimed at women or men, or both. Determine the age range, average income and lifestyle of your reader. Research the type of person you want to buy your magazine and design your magazine to be targeted to that person. Targeting the right market is essential in the overall success of a magazine.
Create a business plan. A business plan is essential for starting any business, including a lifestyle magazine. Your business plan should cover your overall concept, content, industry and market research and analysis, analysis of competition and your marketing strategy. You can also include your mission statement or objective along with any experience or education that makes you qualified to launch a magazine.
Hire editors, writers and photographers to produce your content. Once you have planned everything out, your magazine needs content and it’s very unlikely that you are capable of doing everything yourself. Reach out to young photographers and writers to see if they would be willing to contribute or collaborate for free for the first issue, with the possibility of payment for future projects. Young creatives trying to build their portfolios are perfect for contributing to new magazines.
Find advertisers. Advertising is one of the principal ways magazines make money and your advertisers should reflect your target market. If you are hesitant about contacting large brands and companies, get in touch with small local brands about advertising in your magazine. You can also contact webmasters for websites in related areas to see if they are interested in advertising, particularly if you have chosen an online platform that supports hyperlinks.
Choose a platform. While printed magazines have a high level of authority, they are significantly more expensive to produce and maintain -- with a higher rate of failure -- than digital magazines. Digital magazines, which are viewed online, are relatively easy to put together and require little knowledge in web developing.
Promote your magazine. If you have chosen an online magazine, obviously you need a website as your magazine’s homepage, but websites can be beneficial to print magazines as well. Create a blog where you give news updates and happenings with your magazine. Sign up for profiles on social networks such as Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn to promote your magazine further online.
Sophie Southern has been a freelance writer since 2004. Her writing has been featured in "JPG" magazine and on Zlio.com. Southern holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in photography from the School of Visual Arts.