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How to Publish a Magazine Successfully?

Updated on January 11, 2017

How to Start a Magazine

If you are interested in publishing a magazine, here are some basic suggestions and step by step know how which can help you to become a successful publisher.

Before planning, ask yourself that why you want to publish a magazine? Is it a full time business venture or you want to just fulfill your wish to become a publisher and editor? Or is it a venture for a non-profit organization or community service? Is it a Weekly, Fortnightly, Monthly or Quarterly magazine? Although in any case the basic things of publishing a magazine are same, these questions are important.

Your Budget

It is important to know that how much money you have invest for publishing a magazine. Actually the amount of investment depends on the setup, the number of employees, the size (number of pages) of the magazine, periodicity and quality of the magazine and many other things. To run a magazine successfully, you need to have working capital sufficient for at least 6 months.

If it is a small magazine or newsletter type magazine, the expenses are very low when compared to hi-fi magazines.

Main Sources of Income for Magazine Publishers

There are two main sources of income for the publisher of a magazine. The first source is advertisements and second is subscriptions and sales.

You can collect advertisements directly from the advertisers, by sending representatives, or through advertisement agencies. If the number of copies of your magazine in circulation is satisfying for the advertisers and advertising agencies, you can get lot of advertisements for your magazine.

Chitralekha: a Weekly magazine in Marathi language.
Chitralekha: a Weekly magazine in Marathi language.

Choose a Subject

It is important to choose a subject for your magazine. There are literally thousand of subjects from which you can choose one. Some of the popular subjects are:


Business and Industry




Money and Investment


Science and Technology

You can be more specific in choosing a subject. Like in Business section, you can publish a magazine related especially to Mail Order Business or any other specific business field. Similarly in Technology section, you can publish a magazine on cell phones.

Choose a Name for Your Magazine

Every magazine has a name. So you have to choose a name for your magazine. The name should be short, sweet and easy to remember. If you see the names of some of the most successful magazines, you will find that they are short, sweet and easy to remember.See following names:


National Geography


India Today


After choosing a name, it have to get approved from national authority. In India the names of magazines and newspapers are verified and approved by Registrar of Newspapers in India (RNI), New Delhi. The name you have chosen will be approved only if a magazine or newspaper with same name is not registered.

Find Writers

Find writers who write on the specific subject you have chosen for your magazine. Contact them and invite articles for your magazine. Offer a good remuneration.

If your budget is low and you do not want to spend on remuneration of writers,some writers would like to send articles without expectation of remuneration. But I suggest that you must pay each writer for his/her contribution. The amount you have to spend on writers is very low in your entire spending, and when you pay to writers, you get long term benefits.

You can use few articles from free article providing websites.

Never publish any article without permission of the writer. It is illegal and unethical.

Find a Printing Press

If you have your own printing press, it is the best option, but if you don't have it, do not worry. You do not need your own printing press to publish a magazine. Find a good printing press to print your magazine. The printer should be professional who will deliver printed copies of your magazine in or before time.

The printer's job is printing the magazine in time. You should handover all the required material i.e. the manuscripts, photographs etc. It will be better if you provide ready to print material i.e. DTPed pages. It will save your time and money.

If yours is a newsletter type magazine, you do not need any printing press. Newsletters can be printed on photocopy machine.

Appoint Representatives in Various Cities

Appointing representatives at various places is a must thing for publishers of Magazines. The main job of the representatives is to collect advertisements for your magazine.

To collect subscriptions, you should find subscription agents everywhere.

If yours is a News Magazine, you have to appoint reporters in various cities. Freelance reporters are available everywhere.

Sales of Your Magazine

Find a distributor for your magazine and he will send your magazine to hundreds of newspaper stalls. You have to pay a commission to the distributor for this work.

You can send your magazine directly to the Newspaper stall through your representatives in various cities. Here you have to pay commission to the sellers. The commission varies between 25%-40%.

Another way of increasing the sales of your magazine is to get direct subscribers. You can get subscribers through appoint subscription agents, through advertisements and campaigns. You should send your magazine regularly to your subscribers by post. The rates of postal department for magazines and newspapers are very low.

This is just basic information on publishing a magazine. In near future, I would like to write separate articles on each topic I have discussed her.

-Mahavir Sanglikar


Submit a Comment

  • jainismus profile image

    Mahaveer Sanglikar 5 years ago from Pune, India

    Thanks Angelme566 for the comment.

  • Angelme566 profile image

    Angelme566 5 years ago

    A very informative piece .. a help for for those who are in publishing industry and those whop want to be part of it !

  • jainismus profile image

    Mahaveer Sanglikar 5 years ago from Pune, India

    giocatore, Thank you for expressing your views.

  • jainismus profile image

    Mahaveer Sanglikar 5 years ago from Pune, India

    Thanks theastrology

  • giocatore profile image

    giocatore 5 years ago

    I publish an industry magazine. I would think twice before starting a hardcopy consumer magazine. I would strongly consider going directly to tablet computer subscriptions with a new consumer title. Cheers, and thanks for sharing.

  • theastrology profile image

    theastrology 5 years ago from New Delhi

    Great information for the people who want to do magazine publishing business.

    Vote up!

  • jainismus profile image

    Mahaveer Sanglikar 5 years ago from Pune, India


    Thank you Sir for your valuable comments and sharing.

  • Brett.Tesol profile image

    Brett Caulton 5 years ago from Thailand

    I had never thought about doing this in the paper form, but it is certainly an interesting idea. This was a very informative hub.

    Shared, up, useful and tweeted.

  • jainismus profile image

    Mahaveer Sanglikar 5 years ago from Pune, India

    Thank you teaches12345 for your comments.

  • teaches12345 profile image

    Dianna Mendez 5 years ago

    Great information and suggestions for those who are looking for an opportunity in this venue. Thanks for sharing.

  • jainismus profile image

    Mahaveer Sanglikar 5 years ago from Pune, India

    Thank you Sir. It is my honor that we are connected.

  • H P Roychoudhury profile image

    H P Roychoudhury 5 years ago from Guwahati, India

    Good thinking and good idea but however implementation is difficult. Good luck. Thank you for making me your fan.