The top publishing companies in Nigeria didn’t start the business of printing newspapers and books yesterday before they attained such status as the giants in the publishing industry. Before the widespread acceptance of internet in Nigeria or even online publishing, newspaper was one of the most important source of news in the country with big players such as the Punch Newspaper, the Sun newspaper, Vanguard, etc. storming the news market as the trusted newspapers for the public.
The coming of the internet had made these publishing companies and many more to go into online news publications while still printing in the conventional form. Other news media had also been introduced and many of which focus more on the online version. However, this does not mean starting a traditional newspaper company is not profitable, it only mean you need a step by step guide on how to start a newspaper publishing business in Nigeria.
Come to think of it, a large chunk of the Nigerian population still makes use of these types of newspapers. If you want to be a newspaper publisher are interested in starting a newspaper publishing business in Nigeria, follow the steps below:
Research and Planning
There’s no better way to say it than he who did not plan is actually planning to fail. This is particularly important in the Nigerian news industry where you will definitely meet stiff competition. You need to plan and know the competition your budget could stand. Can you compete against the national dailies and other established publishing companies? If not, why not pick just a state and dish out news about only that state or better still pick a niche like football, entertainment, finance or real estate. Trust me, if you do your research well, you will know there’s money “in the niche”.
After deciding on what news to publish, the next step is to plan. I strongly advice it should be written. Decide on your newspaper culture and vision. How many times do you as a newspaper publisher want to publish in a month or week. Is it daily, weekly or monthly? Also decide on your distribution and monetizing strategy and see if you would be comfortable with it else, tweak it. There are enough writings on newspaper publishing business plan writing, go through them online and don’t skip any of the chapters when writing yours.
Get A Location
This is not an online publishing firm, even though it is expected that you own the online version of the newspaper and as such, you will need a physical location where you will operate from. Trust me, not only having an office, the nature of this office speaks volume of your business so choose wisely, using your budget as the major deciding factor.
Handle All Legalities
You need to register your company and make it legal and also acceptable. After registering your company, you need to visit the national library in either Abuja or Lagos for approval. If you got approved, you are expected to submit a maiden copy and request for an ISSN.
Build a Trusted Team
This is not a business you can do alone as a newspaper publisher. You need a team of qualified experts to be able to compete. At the very least, you will need a production manager, sales manager, marketing manager, freelance content writers and graphic designers.
Start Production & Seek Advertisers
All the above are just a preamble to start your own newspaper publishing business, here; you are actually starting your business and sending it out to the public. It doesn’t end here. Listen to feedback, both negative and positive and act accordingly. When you have start production of the newspaper, you can now start seeking advertisers because at first, they would not start coming, it is only when you become a top publishing company and are established that you can start expecting them even at that, you need to go after them else, your competitors will be playing a fast one on you.