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9 Resources for Trade Publications: Create & Grow Your Magazine

May 18, 2024
trade publications

Trade publications offer the highest-quality content for working professionals. The top trends, industry updates, and profiles can be all be found in trade publications. These are often the go-to sources for advice so that corporate professionals can stay on top of their skill sets and continue to excel.

In this guide, we dive into some essential resources for creating your own trade publications.

What are trade publications?

Trade publications are magazines that are written for a specific industry, profession, or vertical. Articles are written by experienced professionals within the trade to highlight important news, industry updates, and trends. Articles might also profile specific professionals or companies that have achieved milestones or paved the way with unique and effective business strategies.

Many trade publications are purely digital, while some distribute print versions to paying subscribers.

For B2B companies, trade publications offer excellent advertising opportunities, as all readers fit within a specific industry or role.

What are examples of some popular trade publications?

Check out these popular trade publications.

1. The Chronicle of Higher Education

chronicle of higher education

The Chronicle of Higher Education covers topics and updates for all levels of higher education, from local community colleges to elite PhD programs. Recent issues have covered the FAFSA crisis, student unrest, DEI, and university finance and operations.

The publisher also creates special editions to help colleges prepare for the future. For instance, their Higher Education in 2035 report covers the enrollment challenges and online learning trends of the future.

2. Communication Arts

As a multi-discipline trade publication, Communication Arts serves a variety of industries including advertising, design, illustration, interaction, photography, and typography. It’s a great magazine for creative professionals and marketers who want to take their visual communication skills to the next level.

3. Aviation Week

aviation week

Aviation Week & Space Technology offers news and analysis across all sectors of aviation, aerospace, and defense. A subscription to the bi-monthly magazine also gains access to the 100+ year archive of issues since 1916.

4. Manufacturing Today

pushing boundaries

Covering innovative advancements, Manufacturing Today is a popular online publication. Topics include automotive, aerospace, plastics, sustainability, engineering, packaging, chemicals, consumer products, and digital transformation—making it a worthwhile publication for a wide variety of corporate professionals.

5. Modern Salon

modern salon

Modern Salon is the premier trade publication for hair salons. The monthly magazine covers color theory, professional haircare brand news, and seasonal trends. They also give out awards to salons and stylists, helping other business owners find resources for inspiration.

Why create a trade publication?

Most trade publications can be easily designed, distributed, and marketed online, making a trade magazine a highly profitable business opportunity. The US digital publishing industry is predicted to grow to a $27 billion market cap by 2027.

With the advent of truly mobile-optimized digital magazines, more and more people are engaging with premium content on their mobile devices and tablets.

If you see a gap in your industry for premium content, now’s a great time to start your own publication. Or, if you already publish a trade magazine but want to reach more readers, maybe it’s time to use modern solutions for distribution so you can effortlessly grow your reader base.

Below we provide some great resources for improve your trade publication.

9 great resources for creating and growing trade publications

Keep reading for the best software and services for trade publications.

1. Adobe InDesign

adobe indesign

With Adobe InDesign, you get the premier platform for layout design. This software is ideal for creating books, digital magazines, print magazines, e-books, posters, and interactive PDFs. It’s a favorite for professional graphic designers.

2. Blinkplan


Blinkplan is the most popular magazine flat planning app. This magazine pagination tool makes it easy for teams to collaborate virtually to determine which pages go where. You can effortlessly share your flat plan with others, take their feedback, and make changes.

3. eMagazines


eMagazines helps publishers create the most beautiful digital editions of their magazines. Whether you convert your print magazine into digital or take a digital-first approach, your readers will love our simple, single-column layout. Content is easily readable on all devices. Our platform is trusted by the top magazines in the world as well as niche trade publications.

4. WordPress


Most trade publications also publish search-engine-optimized articles on a daily or weekly basis to grow their audience for their premium content. As one of the most popular website builders in the world, WordPress is a great choice for your content management system (CMS). The platform offers advanced categorization and blog layout so you can organize content for a variety of industries or topics.

5. Hoopla


With Hoopla you can offer your magazine content in libraries. This is great for growing your brand awareness and hooking college students and young professionals on your content. Plus, libraries pay you a small fee when your content is accessed, making it a win-win solution.

6. Magazine Jukebox

magazine jukebox

Magazine Jukebox allows you to offer your content in waiting rooms, healthcare facilities, airports, hotels, cafes, restaurants, and transit centers. Your content is offered for free, so be sure to choose a strategy that will target urban areas with readers most likely to subscribe.

7. Disticor


As a magazine distribution service, Disticor helps distribute over 4,000 magazine titles to newsstands throughout Canada and the US. Trade publications, especially those that serve a large industry (like technology or advertising) can perform well in urban markets. In particular, newsstands in office buildings, airports, and downtown retail shops can all be a great fit for professional magazines.

8. PDG Mags

pdg mags

PDF Mags is another option for print magazine distribution. The company’s niche is special interest publications, making them a great fit for trade magazines looking to grow their audience and sell more magazines in retail stores. As mentioned above, it’s all about location. Work with a distributor who will help you craft a strategy to put your publication on the newsstands your target reader visits.

9. Braze


One of the fastest-growing software companies around, Braze is a top choice for multichannel marketing. Use it to craft SMS and email campaigns based on real user behavior and upsell readers on special editions. With Braze, you can also utilize the CRM functionality to store information on all of your subscribers.

Ready to launch a digital trade magazine that’s easy to read across all devices? Learn more about eMagazines.