This business may seem for anyone who wants to start small maybe from home as something out of your league your reach due to various related aspects such as equipment needed to print a directory but given the modern sophistication of technology has enabled us to touch on business of this caliber with relative ease and be successful in terms of a small business.
So in getting into more detail of the subject, in addressing the issue of printing, it is clear that printing of your directory can be contracted with commercial printers in your area, or even out of town. Another alternative that is growing immensely in popularity these days is to use a desktop publishing system to produce 'copy ready masters,' which printers or copy services then duplicate inexpensively (offset printing from copy ready masters is the cheapest, providing your need 2,000 copies or more).
Prior to stepping to detailed matters of the publishing business of directories, it is important to know that, a business directory is a booklet or pamphlet that is sold, subsidized (bought and given away) or given away free to local citizens, visitors or tourists. The Directory contains a wealth of information of interest to visitors and is also enticing to the advertisers. It too, is financed by primarily by the ads it contains.
As a small directory publisher you need to work out a plan to list all restaurants, sights to see, banks, motels and/or groceries (so the list will be of value to the reader) and this will in turn attract the advertisers to have their ads placed in your directory since the directory is in the hands of many.
The advertising options can come in diverse and different ways and it is imperative that huge importance is given to this function since it is with these ads that you are going to finance this business of yours. So, for a small amount, they can have their ad in bold letters; a little more will get them a slogan or log; or they can purchase space for a separate advertisement, coupon or what-have-you. In addition, it is important that you too, like some publishers include an article about an advertiser if the ad is a certain size. Further, the number of copies each merchant gets to give out or sell also may be governed by his financial participation, especially if the publication has a printed price.
On one final note, it is important to gather information and tips from you merchants and advertisers as well, such as, by getting an idea of what they think is needed, you will be forming a concept of what type of publication they would advertise in. Don’t be shy about asking them for suggestions. They know the area as business people and may be able to provide you with some very worthwhile ideas.