The news publishing industry in general is not an easy one to get into. Firstly there is the fact that there are already some really, very big players who are very well established in the market. And I’m not just talking about big online news websites such as the Huffington Post, but huge multi-national media corporations with newspapers, television channels and all of the rest. So in the face of it you might think that a small independent publisher has absolutely no chance of making any in roads whatsoever into this market. But that is not necessarily the case. There is still space for those small independent publishers if you find a good niche and target it well.
And since news is such a broad church there are plenty of potential niches which a new writer or publisher could choose. This could mean writing about a particular type of news which you know a lot about, such as, for example, publishing industry news. Or it could mean writing about the big events of the day from a particular perspective – and if you are doing that and you have a truly novel perspective to offer people then you could even forge your own niche – a completely new niche created by you if you are taking this second route.
If you are thinking about setting up and running this kind of site then probably the most important thing is that you really must cover all of the big issues which are relevant to your niche. People just won’t keep coming back to your site in the numbers that you will want to see if there are big holes in your coverage – even if the writing which you do publish is super high quality and super informative and entertaining.
One solution to this, if you are a lone writer and do not feel that you have the time to cover absolutely everything yourself, is to hire freelance writers. There are plenty of places where you can hire freelancers pretty cheaply online, although you will have to take care to pick the right people or you may end up with low quality work. If you do not want to pay out the money for other writers then another solution is to write short summaries of a story and then provide links to further information. Ten or fifteen minutes may be all it takes to do a little bit of research, pull together the main facts of the news story in question, and one or two quality articles to recommend. Of course you can also solicit contributions from your readers, but that is not always a reliable source of content.
But the main thing is that you must appear unique from the start. That means you must put across a unique selling point about your site in the design, layout, tag line and title, and not just rely a unique writing style for the articles themselves.
Another important point it that news publishing is very time sensitive. What I mean by that is that when a news story breaks it pays off big time to publish something as soon as possible. And you can even go further than that. If you know your niche well you can publish stories with rumours of what may happen or predictions of your own, and that way you will already have relevant content about any given story even before it breaks – which will give you a big boost when it comes to getting traffic for the story ahead of bigger sites who cover a broader range of topics and may therefore not have the niche expertise to see the story coming.