One of the magazine features that - in our mind - always made us stand out was our policy to not include any ads. Our rationale was that without ads, it would be a lot easier to preserve our editorial independence. In addition, we felt that sometimes, ads cannot be very clearly distinguished from the editorial content of a magazine, making it harder for the reader to see what was paid-for content and what wasn’t.
Now, the financial reality of running a small business in the print space is that we’ve been facing exponentially rising paper and production costs, both in the short- as well as the mid-term past. When we first started our magazine, we were able to secure two-issue printing contracts, guaranteeing stable production costs that allowed us to forecast and plan for at least a year ahead. That hasn’t been possible in the last two years, and we also don’t foresee that coming back any time soon. In the contrary - it’s more uncertain than ever how paper and consequentially print prices are going to develop.
Here’s where ads come in: With ad revenue adding to our overall magazine budget, we’ll be able to keep our retail and wholesale prices as stable as possible. We’ll have more wiggle room to offset rising production costs, and, full transparency here, ideally I’ll be able to pay myself for the work that I put into the magazine. Since coming back from maternity leave, I haven’t done that - my own salary went into buffering the rising print costs, but that’s frankly neither sustainable nor fair anymore.
So: As of Issue 9, we’ll be offering ad space in the magazine. We striving for “ethical advertising” - as much as such a thing exists. We’ll vet all our advertisers - if we’re inviting a company to book ad space, we either have worked with them before or have checked them out intensively - and will clearly mark ads as such.
We’re also making our Media Kit publicly accessible (you can download it here). The kit includes our ad prices as well as all the other details that potential ad buyers might be interested in, and it’s important to us to make it visible to the public as well.
Last, but not least, a note on ad prices: Inspired by a fellow magazine, we’re doing tiered pricing for our ads. Depending on the annual company turnover, the ad price differs. We’re doing this because we want to level the playing field as much as we can and hold space for smaller companies who might otherwise not be able to afford ad space as well.
A huge thank you goes out to the fellow magazine publishers who have graciously shared their ad policies with us - I love seeing and being in this community of indie publishing companies. You rock!
Hanna Lisa x
Join the Making Stories flock!
Every Tuesday our newsletter arrives in your inbox, full to the brim with Making Stories goodness. If you would like to join in on the fun, fill in the form below.
As a thank you, we gift you a digital publication of your choice!