2. Page plan & publication structure

The second step is to translate the goals you have defined into a page plan. How is the publication going to be structured? How many articles/pages will the publication have? What sections/chapters will the publication use? The page plan will describe your first edition. Subsequent editions will use a similar structure. Some guidelines:

  • The length of your publication should match your goals and target audience. A corporate newsletter typically receives a shorter attention span than for instance a yearly (financial) report. In general, less pages is better.  A good rule of thumb for marketing-related publications is about 10 pages (including cover).
  • In a typical print publication you could have many small, short articles on a single page. A good way to translate this to online is to place the individual articles in popups and trigger those using small teaser images.
  • It’s best to give a page a clear focus. Pages within H5mag are called ‘articles’ and have their own unique URL. By staying on-topic, your page gets much better results in Google and it fits better with the non-linear way people browse online.
  • Think about the cover page. Do you want to use a ‘feature article’ or do you want to use something more abstract? Perhaps you want to show a few headlines which link through to articles later on in the publication. Make sure that your cover triggers people to read on!
  • Also think about your last page. Typically you’ll feature contact details/credits here. Or some info about when your next edition will be released. Your reader will expect a finishing page to know that they have reached the end of the publication. Your last page is always a good spot for a call-to-action.
  • Do you want to divide your publication in a few different sections? Do you want to spread out certain types of content throughout your publication, or do you want to bundle similar articles next to each other? There is always a fine balance between boring your reader and giving them the necessary structure to not get lost. Put yourself in the shoes of your audience.

Deliverable: page plan

Next step: Graphic design & layout

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