Participating in E-zines

This is the first installment of a two part discussion on e-zines and how they can be a very important part of your marketing strategy. In this issue we will focus on participating in other people's e-zines and in our next edition we will discuss creating your own e-zine.

E-zines or electronic magazines are the online version of magazines. They are content-rich and contain information regarding a certain topic in the form of magazine articles and features and sometimes advertising as well. More than 60 percent of Internet users frequently read online publications, or e-zines. This is why they are among the most popular marketing tools on the Internet. Today there are thousands of e-zines dedicated to a wide variety of topics. The e-zines may be full versions of traditional print magazines, partial versions of print magazines or may be previous month's editions.

There are two types of e-zines:
  • Web-based e-zines - have only an online presence and are accessed through their Web site by browsing from page to page. They have the look and feel of a traditional magazine and have lots of pictures and advertisements. There may or may not be a subscription fee.
  • E-mail e-zines - may come as plain text or HTML emails. They tend to be more content oriented with several pages of articles and often classified advertising. Most are run weekly or bi-weekly and are usually free to subscribers. Because the subscribers are interested in the content and have taken the time to subscribe they are a very valuable marketing tool.

1. Tips

  • You can participate in electronic magazines in a variety of ways:

    • advertise directly
    • be a sponsor
    • submit articles
    • send press releases
    • start your own

  • Advantages of E-zine Advertising:

    • long lifespan of your ads - may be saved for future reference in recipients' mailboxes or there may be an archive
    • ads included in issues in a relatively short period of time - perhaps in the next week or two as opposed to print magazines which close their ad space months before issues hit the newsstand.
    • your ad is more likely to be seen as advertising in e-zines in limited as opposed to print magazines where every second page is an advertisement.
    • e-zine ads can include a hypertext link to your Web site so your potential customers are only a click away from purchasing your product or service.
    • e-zines are often shared with friends and associates and viral marketing encourages readers to send a copy to a friend - however you are only charged for your advertising based on subscribers, so you are receiving extra exposure for free!
    • e-zine subscribers are interested in the content of the e-zine or they wouldn't have subscribed - this means readers are extremely targeted and have a genuine interest in the information
    • geographically speaking e-zines have a far broader reach than traditional print magazines - it is not uncommon to have subscribers from around the world.
    2. Tools   

    Directory of e-zines organized by category. A great site to find appropriate e-zines to reach your target market.

    Ecola Newsstand
    Ecola Newsstand has over 8,400 magazines, newspapers and publications. There are over 100 categories of magazines to choose from.

    eZINE Search
    Billed as the world's ultimate e-magazine database. Searchable by category.

    Ezine-Universe is a great directory of e-mail based e-zines.

    List City's Book of E-zines
    A list of e-zines organized by category that accept paid advertising as well as all the details and contact information on each e-zine.

    3. Techniques
    • Guidelines for Your Advertising:

      • check the ads displayed in the e-zine for repetition - if advertisers have not advertised more than once they probably did not see positive results.
      • respond to some of the ads and ask the advertisers what their experiences were with advertising in that particular e-zine - tell them who you are and why you are contacting them and they will likely be more receptive to your inquiry.
      • ask the e-zine publisher questions (eg. how many subscribers are there?, what types of ads do they accept?, is there a policy of not running competing ads?, is there a set of advertising policies you can receive via e-mail?)
      • find out if the publisher provides tracking information and if so what specific reports you will have access to
      • find out if your ad can have a hypertext link to your Web site
      • if the ad allows a hypertext link make sure it links to an appropriate page - one that is a continuation of the advertisement or a page that provides details on the item you were advertising and provide a link to the order form from this page to assist in the transaction.
      • obtain an editorial calendar if possible so you can target your ads if there is a specific topic being addressed in an upcoming issue. Perhaps there will be an article relating to a product or service you provide so you may choose to advertise in that issue.
      • make sure the advertising rates are reasonable based on the number of subscribers - ask about rates for a one time placement as well as multiple placements. Another option if the rates are not in your budget is to ask the publisher if they would accept a link on your Web site in exchange for an ad.
      • develop your ads with your target market in mind - wherever possible include a link to your Web site and an e-mail link to the appropriate individual within your organization.
      • develop a mechanism for tracking advertising responses - use different email accounts and different Web page URLs for different ads.
      • make sure you are aware of the publication's advertising deadlines and ad format preferences.

    • Providing Articles and News Releases to E-zines:
      • target e-zines that have the same target market that you do and that have a broad subscriber base.
      • include information on your products and services in an interesting article that would fit the publisher's guidelines.
      • make sure the e-zine includes a resource box at the end of the article crediting you as the author and provides a hypertext link to your Web site or your e-mail address.
      • having articles published enhances your reputation as an expert and people like to buy products and services from people who are experts in their field.
      • in addition to e-zines, submit your articles to "article banks" online which are resource sites for e-zine publishers - they search the banks looking for articles for their e-zine and if they use your article they include the resource box.

      4. Resources

      Advertising in E-zines

      Online Advertising using E-zines

      7 Undeniable Reasons You Should Be Advertising in E-zines

    • Advertising in E-zines - Something for Everyone

      E-zine Advertising


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