So, here’s the deal: I edit and produce a small-scale print magazine about all things DIY. It’s been on the go and doing well for at least ten years. Suddenly, about three years ago, I started to see a dramatic decline in my subscriptions. I was at a total loss as to what was happening. I hadn’t changed the style or nature of the content and the magazine’s articles were still being written to a high level. Things started going from bad to worse. Then a friend of mine who also ran a small print magazine told me about how he was gradually moving his publication online using a free online magazine maker called Yumpu.
I asked him if I should create an online magazine and he started to explain a few things about what was happening in the world of digital publications. I was so shocked by what he told me that I went right home and started to do my own research. That’s when my mind really started to get blown and I began to look at Yumpu a lot more closely. Before I get into how I used this free platform to turn things around, here a 5 of the most insane things I learned that made me want to create an online magazine.
- The vast majority of major established print magazines such as Cosmopolitan and Wired have already migrated their product to a digital format in order to create an online magazine. A recent National Readership Study in the US found that this had increased audience reach by as much as 69% for most magazines. In laymen’s terms, what this means is that almost every major print publication has woken up to the rewards of a digital publication.
- Digital content access has never been so high. A recent study estimated that a whopping 84% of adults in Europe and the US have access to a smartphone. Apple has sold a staggering 350 tablets worldwide which represent only a small fraction of the overall tablet market. According to a recent Pew Study, 73% of tablet owners used their device to read articles occasionally, with just under 20% doing so on a daily basis. Another reason to create an online magazine to reach your audience.
- According to a 2017 eMarketer report, device owners, on average, spend a whopping five hours a day consuming digital content, the majority of which is consumed via a digital device. In other words, if someone is reading a magazine article these days, odds are they are reading it off of a personal device screen.
- A 2017 report from Statista found that roughly 100 million people read digital magazines on a regular basis, with that number expected to increase to just under 150 million by 2022.
- (This is a big one) 50% of social network users repost content they read. This means that once you create an online magazine and people start reading your stuff on social media platforms, it has the potential to go viral fast.
So: What does this all mean and why am I going on about Yumpu?
Well, the essence of my story is that a new landscape had grown up around me without me even noticing. It’s a story as old as time itself but once I’d seen the new challenge on the horizon I knew that I needed to evolve or die. The problem was to create an online magazine within a budget dictated by my revenue stream. It is pretty constant but surplus capital for reinvestment is minimal.
Given my budget concerns, I was keen to try something new without risking revenue. You can create an online magazine for free on Yumpu with a freemium account. This will do everything you need to begin with, including offering unlimited pages per magazine. However, once you’re convinced and if you are serious about your magazine, you’re probably going to want to upgrade to one of the premium account options.
I’m currently using the WEBKIOSK plan which offers me a personalised domain and access to Google analytics. This allowed me to create an online flip magazine in no time at all. The WEBKIOSK plan costs 79 Euro per month which is well within my budget.
There’s a middle of the road option for just under 15 euro as well called AdFree where you can create your own online magazine, get analytics and have it search engine optimized by the platform.
So, if you’ve been paying attention to the facts I’ve given above, you’ll realise it ain’t just about getting online, it’s about getting multi-platform. Mobile devices are where the real growth is occurring. Yumpu lets you create your own online magazine app so readers can access your content on their smartphones and tablets. Importantly, this works with both Android and iOS.
One of the great features of this is that Yumpu deals with Apple on your behalf when it comes to adding your own branded app to the App Store. If you’ve ever known or seen someone who’s tried to do this by their lonesome (look out for people who seem to have recently torn hair from their own skull), you’ll understand why this is such a benefit.
It does a lot of the heavy lifting when it comes to technical jobs
What impressed me most about Yumpu was how much work they do on my behalf. Whereas other platforms tend to offer a bare-bones structure and let you off to figure out the nuances, Yumpu offers an easy interface setup that primes your content for accessibility and reach. For instance, when you upload your content, the system will automatically optimize it for search engines. If you don’t know what this means, trust me; it’s a biggie. They also provide a ready-to-use embed code, that allows you to embed your content into your website or blog. Simples! This will also support your search engine marketing.
How to create an online magazine
When it comes to customizing your content and public interface, I’ve found there are a lot of additional features and templates to play around with that allow you to create your own online magazine in-designs. However, to begin with, converting your content across to the digital platform is pretty straightforward. If you’re like me, you’ve got most if not all of you stuff stored in a PDF format.
You can create an online magazine from PDF. Once you’ve set up an account, all you need to do is drag your PDF’s into the appropriate box and the system will start to convert them.
Once you’re happy with the way it looks, look for the social media buttons at the bottom and hit ’em all! I’ve dramatically increased my reach by consistently posting my stuff to Facebook and watching the reposts roll in!
The platform gives you a handy weekly report on how your publications are performing so you can start to build up a picture from the metrics. This has proved vital for me in adjusting and developing my content marketing strategies.
How to create an online magazine with flip pages?
The process is simple and requires as little as two minutes. Simply drag your PDF into the appropriate spot and the system will do the conversion work itself.
Now that you know…
So, now you know the why and you’ve seen the how, it’s time to get started and create an online magazine. Basic accounts cost nothing on Yumpu and the premium accounts each offer a 30-day free trial so finding out how easy it is to migrate your content represents a zero-risk effort. The analytics tools are also a great way to get a sense of what the lay of the land looks like for your demographic. In fact, I genuinely believe it’s worth an attempt for the metrics gathering alone, even if you decide not to pursue long-term digital publication. But for me, there really is no going back. My online magazine allows me to reach more people in more ways and get a better understanding of what my audience wants to read more about. Can’t say it fairer than that!