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How to Start a Digital Media Company

start a digital media company

Starting a digital media company can be very profitable. With proper planning, execution and hard work, you can enjoy great success. Below you will learn the keys to launching a successful digital media company.

Importantly, a critical step in starting a digital media company is to complete your business plan. To help you out, you should download Growthink’s Ultimate Business Plan Template here .

Download our Ultimate Business Plan Template here

14 Steps To Start a Digital Media Company :

  • Choose the Name for Your Digital Media Company
  • Develop Your Digital Media Company Business Plan
  • Choose the Legal Structure for Your Digital Media Company
  • Secure Startup Funding for Your Digital Media Company (If Needed)
  • Secure a Location for Your Business
  • Register Your Digital Media Company with the IRS
  • Open a Business Bank Account
  • Get a Business Credit Card
  • Get the Required Business Licenses and Permits
  • Get Business Insurance for Your Digital Media Company
  • Buy or Lease the Right Digital Media Company Equipment
  • Develop Your Digital Media Company Marketing Materials
  • Purchase and Setup the Software Needed to Run Your Digital Media Company
  • Open for Business

1. Choose the Name for Your Digital Media Company

The first step to starting a digital media company is to choose your business’ name.  

This is a very important choice since your company name is your brand and will last for the lifetime of your business. Ideally you choose a name that is meaningful and memorable. Here are some tips for choosing a name for your digital media company:

  • Make sure the name is available . Check your desired name against trademark databases and your state’s list of registered business names to see if it’s available. Also check to see if a suitable domain name is available.
  • Keep it simple . The best names are usually ones that are easy to remember, pronounce and spell.
  • Think about marketing . Come up with a name that reflects the desired brand and/or focus of your digital media company.

2. Develop Your Digital Media Company Business Plan

One of the most important steps in starting a digital media company is to develop your business plan. The process of creating your plan ensures that you fully understand your market and your business model. The plan also provides you with a roadmap to follow and if needed, to present to funding sources to raise capital for your business.

Your business plan should include the following sections:

  • Executive Summary – this section should summarize your entire business plan so readers can quickly understand the key details of your digital media company.
  • Company Overview – this section tells the reader about the history of your digital media company and what type of digital media company you operate. For example, are you a social media company, content publisher, or an advertising company?
  • Industry Analysis – here you will document key information about the digital marketing industry. Conduct market research and document how big the industry is and what trends are affecting it.
  • Customer Analysis – in this section, you will document who your ideal or target audience are and their demographics. For example, how old are they? Where do they live? What do they find important when purchasing services like the ones you will offer?
  • Competitive Analysis – here you will document the key direct and indirect competitors you will face and how you will build competitive advantage.
  • Marketing Plan – your marketing plan should address the 4Ps: Product, Price, Promotions and Place.
  • Product : Determine and document what products/services you will offer 
  • Prices : Document the prices of your products/services
  • Place : Where will your business be located and how will that location help you increase sales?
  • Promotions : What promotional methods will you use to attract customers to your digital media company? For example, you might decide to use pay-per-click advertising, public relations, search engine optimization and/or social media marketing.
  • Operations Plan – here you will determine the key processes you will need to run your day-to-day operations. You will also determine your staffing needs. Finally, in this section of your plan, you will create a projected growth timeline showing the milestones you hope to achieve in the coming years.
  • Management Team – this section details the background of your company’s management team.
  • Financial Plan – finally, the financial plan answers questions including the following:
  • What startup costs will you incur?
  • How will your digital media company make money?
  • What are your projected sales and expenses for the next five years?
  • Do you need to raise funding to launch your business?

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3. choose the legal structure for your digital media company.

Next you need to choose a legal structure for your own digital marketing agency business and register it and your business name with the Secretary of State in each state where you operate your business.

Below are the five most common legal structures:

1) Sole proprietorship

A sole proprietorship is a business entity in which the owner of the digital marketing company and the business are the same legal person. The owner of a sole proprietorship is responsible for all debts and obligations of the business. There are no formalities required to establish a sole proprietorship, and it is easy to set up and operate. The main advantage of a sole proprietorship is that it is simple and inexpensive to establish. The main disadvantage is that the owner is liable for all debts and obligations of the business.

2) Partnerships

A partnership is a legal structure that is popular among small businesses. It is an agreement between two or more people who want to start a digital media company together. The partners share in the profits and losses of the business. 

The advantages of a partnership are that it is easy to set up, and the partners share in the profits and losses of the business. The disadvantages of a partnership are that the partners are jointly liable for the debts of the business, and disagreements between partners can be difficult to resolve.

3) Limited Liability Company (LLC)

A limited liability company, or LLC, is a type of business entity that provides limited liability to its owners. This means that the owners of an LLC are not personally responsible for the debts and liabilities of the business. The advantages of an LLC for a digital media company include flexibility in management, pass-through taxation (avoids double taxation as explained below), and limited personal liability. The disadvantages of an LLC include lack of availability in some states and self-employment taxes.

4) C Corporation

A C Corporation is a business entity that is separate from its owners. It has its own tax ID and can have shareholders. The main advantage of a C Corporation for a digital media company is that it offers limited liability to its owners. This means that the owners are not personally responsible for the debts and liabilities of the business. The disadvantage is that C Corporations are subject to double taxation. This means that the corporation pays taxes on its profits, and the shareholders also pay taxes on their dividends.

5) S Corporation

An S Corporation is a type of corporation that provides its owners with limited liability protection and allows them to pass their business income through to their personal income tax returns, thus avoiding double taxation. There are several limitations on S Corporations including the number of shareholders they can have among others.

Once you register your digital media company, your state will send you your official “Articles of Incorporation.” You will need this among other documentation when establishing your banking account (see below). We recommend that you consult an attorney in determining which legal structure is best suited for your company.

4. Secure Startup Funding for Your Digital Media Company (If Needed)

In developing your digital media company business plan, you might have determined that you need to raise funding to launch your business. 

If so, the main sources of funding for a digital media company to consider are personal savings, family and friends, credit card financing, bank loans, crowdfunding and angel investors. Angel investors are individuals who provide capital to early-stage businesses. Angel investors typically will invest in a digital media company that they believe has high potential for growth.

5. Secure a Location for Your Business

There are a few things you’ll want to take into account when looking for a location for your digital media company. You’ll need a space that is large enough to accommodate your team and all of your equipment. Additionally, you’ll want to find a location that is accessible and has good internet connectivity. You’ll also want to consider the cost of living in the area, as well as the availability of talent.

The best way to find a suitable location for your digital media company is to consult with a real estate professional. They will be able to help you identify locations that meet your specific needs. Additionally, they can provide you with information on the local market, as well as the current rental rates.

6. Register Your Digital Media Company with the IRS

Next, you need to register your business with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) which will result in the IRS issuing you an Employer Identification Number (EIN).

Most banks will require you to have an EIN in order to open up an account. In addition, in order to hire employees, you will need an EIN since that is how the IRS tracks your payroll tax payments.

Note that if you are a sole proprietor without employees, you generally do not need to get an EIN. Rather, you would use your social security number (instead of your EIN) as your taxpayer identification number.

7. Open a Business Bank Account

It is important to establish a bank account in your digital media company’ name. This process is fairly simple and involves the following steps:

  • Identify and contact the bank you want to use
  • Gather and present the required documents (generally include your company’s Articles of Incorporation, driver’s license or passport, and proof of address)
  • Complete the bank’s application form and provide all relevant information
  • Meet with a banker to discuss your business needs and establish a relationship with them

8. Get a Business Credit Card

You should get a business credit card for your digital media company to help you separate personal and business expenses.

You can either apply for a business credit card through your bank or apply for one through a credit card company.

When you’re applying for a business credit card, you’ll need to provide some information about your business. This includes the name of your business, the address of your business, and the type of business you’re running. You’ll also need to provide some information about yourself, including your name, Social Security number, and date of birth.

Once you’ve been approved for a business credit card, you’ll be able to use it to make purchases for your business. You can also use it to build your credit history which could be very important in securing loans and getting credit lines for your business in the future.

9. Get the Required Business Licenses and Permits

The licenses and permits you need to start a digital media company depend on the specific business you plan to operate. For example, if you plan to sell advertising or make copyrighted content, you may need a license from the government. You should speak with an attorney or business licensing agency in your area to find out what specific licenses and permits you need for your business.

10. Get Business Insurance for Your Digital Media Company

There are various types of insurance necessary to operate a digital media company.

Some business insurance policies you should consider for your digital media company include:

  • General liability insurance : This covers accidents and injuries that occur on your property. It also covers damages caused by your employees or products.
  • Auto insurance : If a vehicle is used in your business, this type of insurance will cover if a vehicle is damaged or stolen.
  • Workers’ compensation insurance : If you have employees, this type of policy works with your general liability policy to protect against workplace injuries and accidents. It also covers medical expenses and lost wages.
  • Commercial property insurance : This covers damage to your property caused by fire, theft, or vandalism.
  • Business interruption insurance : This covers lost income and expenses if your business is forced to close due to a covered event.
  • Professional liability insurance : This protects your business against claims of professional negligence.

Find an insurance agent, tell them about your business and its needs, and they will recommend policies that fit those needs. 

11. Buy or Lease the Right Digital Media Company Equipment

To run a digital media company, you will need computers, software, cameras, and storage devices.

12. Develop Your Digital Media Company Marketing Materials

Marketing materials will be required to attract and retain customers to your digital media company.

The key marketing materials you will need are as follows:

  • Logo : Spend some time developing a good logo for your digital media company. Your logo will be printed on company stationery, business cards, marketing materials and so forth. The right logo can increase customer trust and awareness of your brand.
  • Website : Likewise, a professional digital media company website provides potential customers with information about the services you offer, your company’s history, and contact information. Importantly, remember that the look and feel of your website will affect how customers perceive you..
  • Social Media Accounts : establish social media accounts in your company’s name. Accounts on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and/or other social media networks will help customers and others find and interact with your digital media company.

13. Purchase and Setup the Software Needed to Run Your Digital Media Company

To run a digital media company, you need software to create and manage your content, as well as software to sell and distribute your content. Some common software options for creating content include Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator, while common software for sales and distribution include Apple iTunes and Amazon Kindle.

14. Open for Business

You are now ready to open your digital agency. If you followed the steps above, you should be in a great position to build a successful business and know everything you need about starting a media company. Below are answers to frequently asked questions that might further help you with how to build a media company.

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How to Start a Digital Media Company FAQs

Is it hard to start a digital media company.

There is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, as the ease or difficulty of starting a digital marketing business will vary depending on your digital marketing skills, experience, and resources. 

However, if you follow the steps above, you should be able to start your digital media company without too much difficulty.

How can I start a digital media company with no experience?

It can be difficult to start a digital media company with no experience, but it's not impossible. Here are a few tips to help you get started:

  • Do some research. Make sure you understand the digital marketing space and the competitive landscape.
  • Develop a strong business plan. This will help you outline your goals and marketing strategy .
  • Build a strong team. You'll need talented and experienced people to help you grow your own business.
  • Be prepared to invest money and time. It will take a lot of hard work and dedication to make your business successful.
  • Stay focused and don't give up. Successful businesses take time to build, so be patient and don't get discouraged.

If you follow these tips, you'll be on your way to starting a successful digital media company.

What type of digital media company is most profitable?

The most profitable type of digital media company is one that creates and distributes content across multiple platforms. This could include websites, social media, and other digital channels. Companies that focus on multiple platforms are typically more profitable than those that focus on a single platform, such as just a website or just social media.

A digital media company can also be more profitable if it has diversified revenue streams. This means that the company generates income from multiple sources, such as advertising, subscriptions, and e-commerce. Companies that rely heavily on one source of income are usually less profitable.

How much does it cost to start a digital media company?

The cost to start a digital media company can vary depending on the size and scope of the business. However, in general, there are some basic costs that are incurred in starting any business, such as incorporation costs, legal fees, and marketing expenses. In addition, there may be specific costs associated with launching a digital media company, such as website design and development costs, online advertising expenses, and subscription fees for digital content platforms.

What are the ongoing expenses for a digital media company?

Digital media companies incur a variety of ongoing expenses, including personnel costs, marketing and advertising expenses, and software and hardware expenses. Personnel costs can be significant for digital marketing agencies , as they often employ engineers and technical staff to design and maintain their websites and online audio and video content. Marketing and advertising expenses are also common for digital media companies, as they strive to build their audiences and generate revenue. Software and hardware expenses can also be significant for digital media companies as they often need to purchase and maintain servers, storage devices, and other computer equipment.

How does a digital media company make money?

There are a few ways a digital media company makes money. One way is through advertising. Companies pay to have their ads placed on the website or app, and then the company will receive a commission based on how many people view or click on the ad. Another way is through subscriptions in which people pay a monthly fee to access the company's content. Finally, some digital media companies make money by selling products or services related to their content. For example, a website about travel might sell travel insurance or flight tickets.

Is owning a digital media company profitable?

There are a few reasons owning a digital media company can be profitable. First, the number of people who consume digital media continues to grow. Second, companies are willing to pay a premium for quality digital media content. Finally, digital media is an effective way to reach a large number of people.

Why do digital media companies fail?

There are a few reasons digital media companies fail. First, it's difficult to compete in the saturated marketplace of digital media. Second, they don't always have sufficient funding early on to grow and scale their business properly. Third, some business owners may not focus enough on the customer experience to attract and retain customers. Finally, they may fail if they cannot pivot quickly to new trends in the media industry.

Other Helpful Business Plan Articles & Templates

Business Plan Template & Guide For Small Businesses

media business plan

How to Start a Media Business in 6 Simple Steps

It used to be that a handful of media companies with deep pockets owned and controlled the industry.

These conglomerates had complete control of the information and entertainment we consumed. 

The digital age has completely overturned the industry. 

Now, anyone with a computer and camera and an exciting take on news or entertainment can create a media company. 

6 Steps to Start a Media Business

If you’ve always been interested in the media business, there has perhaps never been a better time to join the fray. 

  • Create a plan for your business
  • Sign up for media planning software
  • Identify your target audience
  • Register your business
  • Start creating content
  • Choose how you’ll make money

The Easy Parts of Starting a Media Business

Not everything about starting a media business has to be complicated.

One of the most promising prospects of getting into this business is the flexibility it offers. You are free to dedicate as little or as much time to starting and growing your business. In addition, you can start as a solopreneur handling all aspects of your business.

This way, you can keep your day job until your company is profitable enough to justify running it full-time.

A media business also has low barriers to entry. Specifically, a digital media business requires little more than your time and effort. You can get started even without an office space, working out of your home. You can also get started with just the basics, like a workstation, internet connection, and website.

Similarly, there are few overhead costs when running a media business, especially in the beginning. You don’t need to worry about paying employees, inventory, storefront, and other overheads associated with most types of business.

The media business also has potentially high gross margins. Coupled with the low overhead costs, you get to keep much of your profit.

Finally, all the information you need to start and run a successful media company is freely available. There are bountiful blogs, websites, Facebook groups, eBooks, YouTube videos, and other media dedicated to helping you start your business. Much of this information is also high value and completely free.

You also don’t necessarily need specific media education or certification to get started.

The Hard Parts of Starting a Media Business

There are many attractive reasons to get into the media business. But not everything is rosy in this line of work. Like starting any other business, you can expect challenges and drawbacks when creating your media company.

The most immediate challenge you’ll face when starting your business is competition. The media business is crowded, and some of your competitors have been in the industry for decades.

Building trust with your audience and clients can prove challenging. It will take some time before you can carve out a space for yourself in the media landscape.

Another challenge once you’re up and running is cash flow. This is especially true in the weeks and months following your big company launch. Starting your business means you are self-employed.

There are no benefits or paid time off. Additionally, you don’t have a consistent check to look forward to. You only get paid for your work, and you can expect some dry months in the beginning.

Starting a media business is also labor-intensive. You’ll likely be handling all the administrative tasks on top of making major business decisions. In addition, your business could easily obliterate your social life and even get in the way of spending quality time with your loved ones.

Lastly, maintaining a positive brand image can prove challenging. You are putting yourself out there as an expert makes you an open target for criticism. Navigating the political and social landscape can be tricky. And, the internet can be brutal for people who are actively putting out their ideas and opinions. You need thick skin to succeed in this business.

However, a media business can be rewarding despite the challenges. The media market is incredibly fragmented in the digital age. There’s a good chance for you to find a niche that you are passionate about, matches your expertise, and where you are likely to succeed.

If you’re ready to pull the trigger on your business idea, here’s how to create a media business step by step.

Step 1 – Create a Plan for Your Business

The media business is an extensive industry. According to Law Insider , you’re in the media business if you engage in creating, producing, distributing, exhibiting, or otherwise exploiting visual, audio, or audio-visual works or recordings. Specific works falling under this definition include television, books, radio broadcasting, periodical publishing, and merchandising.

So, it is necessary to narrow down your idea of the media business you want to create.

Choose Your Niche

There are almost infinite options when starting a media business. So, choose a niche to get started building your business. Some of the most common media niches include:

  • Publishing – including newspapers, magazines, books, blogs, research papers, references, and comics.
  • Video & Animation – including video products such as YouTube, broadcast television, and animation
  • Video Games – including all types of virtual environments like virtual reality
  • Film – may include producing and distributing documentaries, movies, and music videos
  • Streaming Media – refers to on-demand media that people can access online
  • Audio – such as broadcast radio or podcasts
  • Music – includes producing, distributing, and performing music
  • Interactive Media – like apps, websites, and software

The business niche you choose is entirely up to you. But, there are a few guidelines that can help you choose the best niche. For example, you want to start with a general area where you are knowledgeable. To this end, think about your passions, hobbies, and previous work experience.

Then, identify a gap within that market where you position yourself to solve problems. For example, Michael Arrington started the now popular website as a part-time blogger. He focused solely on technology news, allowing him to position his blog as the go-to source for technology news. As a result, TechCrunch was acquired by AOL in September 2010 for approximately $40 million.

Create a Business Plan

A business plan will inform almost every aspect of building and running your business. So, it is worth dedicating some time and effort to creating a plan for your business. Primarily, the business plan will help you identify your goals and objectives. It will also chart a path to reaching the objectives and help you manage your budget and time.  

Some of the sections to detail in your business plan include:

  • Executive summary
  • Financial considerations
  • Keys to success

The Small Business Administration (SBA) website offers extensive resources to help you plan, launch, manage, and grow your business.

Small Business Administration (SBA) homepage.

Step 2 – Sign Up for Media Planning Software

Media planning can be tricky, especially when getting into business for the first time. Media planning software like Bionic helps to make the process easier. The Bionic team will even set up your account within an hour of requesting a free trial.

The platform even sets up training at no extra cost to ensure you get the most out of the software suite.

Request a Free Trial

Simply visit this link to request your free trial. You’ll need to provide a few details including your first and last name, phone number, and email. Then, you’ll receive an email from the customer support team with the credentials for your active account.

The free trial includes all of the software’s features. The team will also help you create your first media plan. This software has everything you need to look professional from the get-go. Bionic works for all media channels, including radio, digital, TV, and print.

Bionic offers three pricing options: Month to Month ($225/month), Annual Contract ($195/month), and Annual Pre-Pay ($175/month). You also get a 14-day money-back guarantee in case you don’t like what the tool has to offer.

Bionic pricing page

Step 3 – Identify Your Target Audience

It is also crucial that you identify the customer group you want to target with your media company. This step will also help you determine the direction of your business. For example, your target audience will determine the type of content you create, the most effective marketing channels, and even how you monetize your media business.

Learn the Types of Target Audiences

Breaking up target audiences into segments makes it easier to find your ideal audience. Some of the categories of target audiences include:

Interest – this group includes audiences with specific hobbies, interests, and entertainment preferences. Interest groups are especially valuable for creating brand loyalty. Therefore, it is worth segmenting audiences into different groups under this category. For example, you can have different groups for entertainment preferences, hobbies, and interests.

Purchase Intention – Audiences in this group are the spenders. They will be the backbone of how your media company generates revenue.

Subcultures – This group is even more effective for creating a community around your brand. Audiences in this group share everyday experiences such as entertainment fandoms or music genres. You can go a long way in creating a loyal following if you understand what motivates this target group.

Ask the Right Questions

There are a few critical questions that can help you identify your ideal target market.

  • The type of media you plan to offer your customers
  • The market segment that benefits most from your media
  • What is unique about the content you plan to offer?

The answers to these questions should easily guide you in identifying an ideal target audience. This way, you can create relevant media that appeals to your customer base. Then, you’ll be able to communicate your value through your core messages and media services.

Then, segment your target audience according to age group, interests, location, and language. This step will further help you target your message to the correct audiences.

Define Your Value Proposition

Defining your value proposition helps to set the pace for your business. Media businesses are a dime a dozen. So, it helps if you can figure out the unique value you have to offer. Does your media company offer unbiased news? Do you have a fresh perspective on entertainment news? 

Think about what you have to offer that is fresh, unique, and valuable in the marketplace. You’ll face a lot of competition from more established media companies. Having a unique value proposition will make it easier to take some much-needed market share.

Step 4 – Register Your Business

You’ll need to set up a business structure before you can get to the hands-on parts of starting a media business. Registering your business will help you appear professional right out of the gate. Also, registering your business has practical implications like paying taxes, liability protections, opening a business account, and hiring employees.

Choose a Business Structure

For most people, a Limited Liability Company (LLC) is the best business structure for a media company. An LLC is flexible, allowing you to publish alone or bring on partners.

You also get limited liability protection, meaning that you are not personally liable for your business’ losses, debts, lawsuits, and other liabilities. This way, you can protect your personal finances and assets.

Additionally, an LLC offers flexible tax options to benefit your bottom line. For example, you can choose to be taxed as a partnership or corporation. We have a great guide here to help you choose the best business structure for your operation. At the very least, you should look into limited liability protection.

So, a sole proprietorship or partnership is out of the question. These business structures do not offer limited liability protection. Your personal assets and finances will be fair game if you run into business difficulties like debt or lawsuits.  

Register Your Business

Once you’ve settled on a business structure, it’s time to make it official. The process of registering an LLC is relatively straightforward. You’ll need to:

  • Choose a name for your LLC
  • File an Articles of Organization with the secretary of state
  • Pay your state filing fee
  • Create an operating agreement
  • Obtain an Employer Identification Number (EIN) from the IRS

We recommend using a business formation service or a legal service. Of course, you can always register the LLC on your own. But, you may run into challenges in any of the steps. A formation service takes responsibility for the entire process. This option helps you form your LLC quickly and easily.

Step 5 – Start Creating Content

This step may look a little different depending on the medium you choose. For example, creating an entertainment news blog will look a lot different than a podcast. But, there are commonalities regardless of the media platform you choose to reach your audience.

Plan Your Content

Content planning is the foundation of the content creation process. So, it is worth taking this step seriously. First, start by researching topics for your content. This shouldn’t be too difficult if you’ve already picked a niche and identified your audience.

Still, you may be overwhelmed with content ideas and topics within your niche.

To solve this problem, research keywords that can help drive traffic to your platform. Google Ads is an excellent tool for this purpose. It comes with a Keyword Planner. Here, you can get valuable search volume data for your targeted keywords. This tool is entirely free, and you can easily download reports.

You’ll want to make sure that you don’t have direct competition from major players. For example, it will take a lot to compete against The Economist if you plan to offer similar content.

Choose a Topic You Like

This point is especially relevant if you’ll be creating your own content. Building valuable content is a long-term game. So, you may not be motivated enough to produce content consistently if you do not enjoy the topic. On the other hand, search engines and audiences alike reward consistency.

For text-based content, make sure that your posts are easy to read. Images, headers, and bullet points help to make your content more scannable. Again, it may sound obvious but stick to the topic best you can.

For video-based content, be sure to create a structure. A good video should include a hook, a summary of the video, the problem you’re hoping to solve, and your unique take on solving the problem. Finally, end the video with a call to action.

Program/Vendor list - video content structure organization feature in Bionic.

Again, the key to a successful media company is consistency. So, make a schedule for creating content and stick to it. The Bionics software will prove invaluable for this step. 

Step 6 – Choose How You’ll Make Money

The main reason many people get into the media business is to make money. Fortunately, there are various avenues for generating profits in this business. You can also combine two or more business models to increase your revenue. Here’s a look at your monetization options for a media business:

Affiliate Linking

Traditionally, affiliate linking has been associated with social media influencers. But, even mainstream media companies are taking advantage of this potentially lucrative revenue source. For example, the New York Times runs a review website known as Wirecutter .

It is essential to include a disclaimer about your affiliate relationships. Similarly, ensure that the affiliate links are clearly marked. This step will help you maintain your journalistic integrity.

Sponsored Content

Sponsored is a relatively new revenue source. But, many digital media companies leverage sponsored content. Here, companies pay to advertise their content on your platform, alongside yours. You can create the sponsored content or have businesses submit it.

Either way, make sure that the sponsored content is clearly marked. Again, it helps your integrity if your audience doesn’t confuse your regular content with sponsored content.

Memberships and Subscriptions

Here, you put your content behind a paywall. Your audience needs to subscribe to get access to the content. This monetization method is very similar to how traditional media makes money.

Subscriptions and memberships can be tricky to monetize. But, it is still possible if you have a sizeable and loyal membership. You’ll need to offer a lot of value to convince your audience to subscribe to your content.

Display Advertising

Most media companies make money from display advertising. You can offer space on your website for businesses to advertise their products or services.

Display advertising is versatile, effective, and relatively easy to do. So, it is worth a shot when considering how to monetize your media business. This option is particularly profitable when you get a large audience. 

Privacy Overview

Media Planning: The Ultimate Guide

Discover the importance of media planning and how the process can save you valuable time, boost conversions, and increase engagements.



Track and organize your media planning and media buying with this free paid media template.

marketer using the ultimate guide to media planning with media plan templates to improve strategy

Updated: 06/09/22

Published: 06/09/22

Today's digital landscape is a competitive one. For any business to find success today, it must create and share media content (such as images, videos, written content, and podcasts) with its audience.

Publishing new media is how you boost brand awareness, engagements, conversions, and revenue for your business. Not to mention, media content helps you stand out from competitors.

Over time, it can become confusing to keep track of, plan, organize, distribute, and analyze all that media content.

The best way to combat these issues is through media planning.

Access Now: Free Media Planning Template

What Is Media Planning?

Benefits of Media Planning

Media planning process, how to create a media plan, media planning templates, media planning and buying, what is media planning.

Media planning is the process of determining how, when, where, and why your business shares media content with your audience. The process includes deciding what media will be shared and which channels you’ll use to boost reach, engagements, conversions, ROI, and more.

Media planning has many moving parts, and the process can be difficult to get right.

By working through the media planning steps as well as using media planning templates , you’ll keep any media-related challenges at bay.

media business plan

Free Media Planning Template

  • Organize your paid media placements
  • Easily calculate total spend
  • Analyze performance and revenue

You're all set!

Click this link to access this resource at any time.

Media planning aids with parts of content creation and distribution, including:

  • Getting to know your target audience on a deeper level so you can effectively reach them through your media content
  • Deciding on which media channels and platforms you’ll share your content
  • Determining the timing and frequency of the media and content you publish and share
  • Keeping up with the latest media trends and technology
  • Sticking to your budget as you work to create, publish, and share high-quality and engaging media content
  • Conducting analyses to measure the success of your media planning process

Now that we’ve discussed the benefits of media planning, let’s review the steps in the media planning process so you can begin developing a strategy for your business.

  • Conduct market research.
  • State your media planning objective.
  • Create your media plan using a template.
  • Implement your media plan.
  • Evaluate your success.

As you work through the steps in media planning, keep in mind that how your business applies the results and conclusions derived from each step will be unique based on your audience and needs.

1. Conduct market research.

The first thing you’ll want to do when developing your media planning process is conduct market research . Market research allows you to tailor the content you create and the media plan you implement to your target audience and customers.

Start by creating and studying your buyer personas as well as developing an understanding of who your target audience and current customers are.

With this information, you can determine what media will reach, resonate with, and convert your audience. In addition, it’ll help you decide about the platforms and channels you will use to publish and share your content.

Featured Resource: HubSpot's Market Research Kit + Templates

market research kit cover image

2. State your media planning objective.

When planning a media campaign, keep a goal in mind to help you navigate the process effectively. Moreover, goals can help you know what content types and platforms you can say "no" to.

Here are some examples of media planning objectives you might have:

  • Strengthen cross-team collaboration (e.g. content, graphic design, animation, video, blog, social media) while creating and sharing media.
  • Enhance and streamline the publication and distribution processes for all media.
  • Improve media distribution timeline to ensure our content is shared efficiently so it’s relevant to our target audience.
  • Amplify the success of our media content by allowing for ample time to analyze its impact and reach our audience.

For instance, let’s say you're looking to create a media plan for your Facebook and Instagram social content. Your objective may be to streamline the content creation process in a timely fashion and then schedule posts on both platforms in advance.

This way, you can ensure your posts are relevant to your audience. Consequently, that will help to boost engagement and stay on top of their minds.

3. Create your media plan using a template.

Now it’s time to make your media plan, but before jumping into templates, let’s go over what exactly a media plan is.

It's not enough to simply do the planning and then assume everyone else is on the right page. You need to outline your strategy in a media plan document. When you do that, you'll be able to ensure alignment on your team and keep all parties accountable.

What is a media plan?

A media plan details what kind of media you will create and where and how you'll publish it to best engage and convert your audience. Some media plans align with larger company initiatives and campaigns, following along with pre-approved messaging and content.

Other media plans are standalone strategies that detail how organizations plan to leverage media (written, video, audio, etc.) to connect with followers and customers.

Media planning templates ensure you stay efficient and effective while working on all aspects of your media content. They keep your media content organized while publishing and sharing it among your audience members.

Due to the variety of templates available for different types and parts of the media planning process, the templates you incorporate will be unique to your business. Don’t be afraid to experiment with or combine different templates.

For example, if your business is looking to create a media plan for your Facebook and Instagram social media, you might choose to implement a social media calendar template .

This type of template will help you coordinate your content across both channels, boost engagement, and improve productivity among your team members — and therefore, achieve the objective you set in step two.

4. Implement your media plan.

Ensure all parties who should be aware of the plan have the necessary details to help you execute accordingly.

In addition, share the contact details of the media planning coordinator in your company, in case anyone has questions or comments.

To get a better understanding of what it means, let's refer back to our example of steps for your social media plan designed for Facebook and Instagram.

If you implement a social media calendar template as part of your media plan, ensure everyone who will be working on it, be it on the creatives team or the publication team, has access to it.

Free Paid Media Template

5. evaluate your success..

Whether your media plan revolves around individual posts on Instagram or a month-long, company-wide campaign, be sure to measure the success of your plan.

Ask yourself and your team questions like, “How did this media plan help us achieve our specific goals? If it didn’t, why?” and “How did the media planning templates and tools we used add value to our media creation and publication processes? If they didn’t, how do we move forward?”

The way you evaluate your media plan’s success should be directly tied to the specific goals of your business regarding your media content, the teams who create the media, and the value you hope to derive from the media (e.g. boost conversions, engagements, revenue, etc.).

Let’s look back at the example above one last time. Think about whether your social media content plan and the calendar template you implemented have helped you reach your target audience and achieve the objective you set.

In addition, ask yourself whether your media plan helped you boost engagement on the social platforms you focused on. You should also strive to find out how to collaborate and coordinate more effectively to increase team-wide productivity.

Media Planning Strategy Components

There are a few additional things to consider when crafting your media planning strategy.

First, what's your media planning budget?

Media Planning Budget

If you're aiming for free media, you can disregard this question. But if part of your media planning involves media buying , you'll need to sit down with your marketing leadership to understand what funds you have to work with.

Set this budget before you start researching platforms and creating content. You don't want to start formulating a campaign that you can't afford down the road.

Second, consider the key messaging points you want your media to communicate.

Media Planning Messaging

You don't have to pre-write all your media content, per se, but you should establish the main themes at the beginning so all media is consistent and on theme.

These messaging points will come from your audience research and may also influence what content types and platforms you pursue, so be sure to establish these early on.

Media Scheduling Strategy

Media scheduling allows you to generate content when your creative juices are flowing. It also helps you work on your advertising strategy when you’re ready, which saves time in the long run.

Your scheduling strategy will look different based on the kind of media you’re working on.

For example, timing is everything for social media posts (free or paid ads). You need to schedule your posts based on when your target audience is online, even when that time is inconvenient for you. Thankfully, there are many tools, such as HubSpot’s social media management software , that allow you to do this.

On the other hand, consistency is important when it comes to newsletters and blog posts. You want your audience to be looking forward to your media content, which in turn will boost traffic and build a community around your brand.

My top tips for your media scheduling strategy include:

  • Study your readers and prospects to know when they’re available on specific platforms
  • Prepare your content in bulk to avoid any inconveniences such as delayed deadlines, which will affect your frequency
  • Choose the correct automation tools for each platform
  • Be consistent — consistency is everything!

With these points in mind, let’s walk through how to create a media plan of your own.

1. Target your buyer personas.

As a marketer, you don’t want to advertise to just anyone. You want to attract the type of buyer who has interest in the media you’re creating — otherwise known as your buyer personas .

A buyer persona is a semi-fictional representation of your ideal customer based on market research and real data about your existing customers.

When you know exactly the type of buyer you need to target with your media plan, you’ll be able to attract the most valuable customers to your business.

When making your buyer personas, center them around these important attributes:

  • Demographics: Age, income, location, or identity
  • Background: Job, career path, and lifestyle
  • Identifiers: Communication preferences and social media platforms
  • Goals: Primary, secondary, personal and professional
  • Challenges: Their roadblocks preventing them from achieving their goals

media business plan

Buyer Persona Templates

Organize your audience segments and make your marketing stronger.

  • Learn about personas.
  • Conduct persona research.
  • Create targetted content.
  • Build your own personas.

2. Define your SMART goals.

You want to write out SMART goals for your media plan. The SMART acronym (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Time-Bound) is a framework that will enable you to better track and drive greater impact from your proposed plan.

It’s important to determine these goals before jumping into your work so you have a media plan that sets a clear direction for you and your team members, and ensures you're able to celebrate the wins when they occur.

Some examples of SMART goal-setting in media planning could look like:

  • Specific : “We want to generate a greater number of qualified leads.”
  • Measurable : “We want our media plan to gain 2,000 followers across Twitter, Metaverse, and Instagram.”
  • Attainable : “We previously reached 70% in customer engagement online over the past quarter, so we’re aiming for 75% in the next.”
  • Relevant : “We want to achieve more positive customer engagement to better the brand’s reputation and gain more fans.”
  • Time-Bound : “We want our media plan to gain 2,000 followers in the next three months across Twitter, Metaverse, and Instagram.”

Once you’ve determined your goals, you can begin looking at resources to assist you in reaching them.

3. Find the media planning tools best suited for you.

We will talk in further detail later in this post about some amazing media planning templates your business can use, but there are software tools that can do some of the heavy lifting for you.

To draft, plan, schedule, and collect conversion analytics, your business could benefit from HubSpot Marketing Hub .

Or if you still want to explore more options, we have a list of 12 essential media planning tools for you to use.

4. Analyze historical data.

You have to know where you began before you can start going forward. Look back at your previous media planning strategy and analyze its impact and reach.

For example, if your business was already on Instagram, check your business page insights to see just how far you got on your old posting schedule and content. Look at the posts that got the most engagement, the time period you had the most traffic, and what content helped to turn prospects into customers.

Make note of the effective elements of your previous strategy and let that drive some of your brainstorming for your new media plan.

5. Choose your media mix.

It’s important that you are up to snuff on the most popular marketing channels, along with your buyer personas preferred ones.

According to the HubSpot’s State of Marketing Report , 1,000 global marketing professionals believe that the top marketing channels are:

  • Social Media
  • Websites/Blogs
  • Email Marketing
  • Video Marketing

You want an omni-channel media plan to reach your target audience where they are, and by researching your buyer personas most frequented channels, and exploring new channels, you can decide upon the right mix for you.

6. Put your media plan into action.

As you conduct your media plan, track your insights and see how you’re doing in comparison to your SMART goals.

Also, understand that you can adjust your plan as necessary over time. Marketing is a rather volatile industry, and knowing when to change your approach is key.

Now that you know what it takes to create a plan, let’s review some resources available to simplify the media planning process.

There are a plethora of media planning templates available online that you can purchase or download for free. The great part about using media planning templates is that you can customize and tailor them to your business’s specific needs and goals.

Depending on the media software your business uses, such as HubSpot’s (free) CRM , Marketing Hub , or Sprout Social , there may be customizable planning templates included (similar to this menu of options from HubSpot).

You may also elect to create templates on your own with the help of Google Sheets .

Either way, how you choose to implement and use media planning templates will be unique to your business and needs — so don’t be afraid to modify your templates over time as your goals evolve or audience grows.

Free Media Planning Template [Download Now]

free media planning template hubspot download

Types of Media Planning Templates

To help get you started, here’s a list of common types of media creation and planning templates. (Click the links to be directed to an associated template resource.)

You might use one or several media templates based on your needs. Remember, there’s no right or wrong answer to which template you should use — it’s about preference and what works best for your business.

  • Use a media planning template to organize your paid media efforts and expenses in one visual location.
  • Use a social media strategy template to align your media content with your audience in a way that provides value for your business.
  • Use a social media calendar template to customize a timeline for when you’ll share your social media posts in a simple, organized, manageable, and effective format.
  • Use an editorial calendar template to plan and optimize all of the marketing content you’ll publish and share, including blogs, social media posts, and campaigns.
  • Use a blog post template to simply fill-in-the-blanks and begin writing engaging, relevant, and well-optimized blog content for your audience (all while avoiding writer’s block!).
  • Use an ebook design template to take the guesswork out of how to make your ebook professional, eye-catching, and beautiful, all while saving yourself valuable time.
  • Use an infographic template in PowerPoint or Illustrator to quickly customize the way you present data, share insights, and promote offers in a way that looks and feels professional.
  • Use an analytics and reporting template for Excel, PowerPoint, and Google Drive to make the processes of pulling, organizing, and sharing data simple no matter which metrics you track.
  • Use a budget template to manage and review your spending and budget with Excel or Google Sheets.
  • Use an advertising template to help you plan and manage advertising campaigns in a way that’s sure to convert audience members into leads and customers.

Media Plan Examples

Although we’ve discussed media planning and even shared a few media planning templates, doing it practically may still pose a challenge. Therefore, I’ve created media plan examples and linked the templates I used for more clarity.

Social Media Plan

When it comes to social media, it’s important to focus your efforts on the platform where your customers are active. However, if you’re in the discovery stage, it’s okay to experiment with a couple of platforms and see which ones work.

Here is an example of a social media plan inspired by the HubSpot Social Media Content Template that will help you explore multiple platforms.

Blogging Media Plan

Keeping tabs on how often you publish your blog content is very important as it helps track your progress. A blogging media plan also helps manage your writers without sending several emails asking about the progress of the blog posts.

Here is a simple example of a blogging media plan you can download from HubSpot .

media plan example: blogging

PR Media Plan

A PR media plan is different and a little intensive because you have to include other organizations. You also have to decide on the form of advertisement that will work for your business, the resources you’ll need, and the people whom you’ll contact.

In this sample template, I’ll only share the reach out and content planning phase. However, the complete template from HubSpot has everything you need, including resource planning. As a bonus, if you’re a beginner, you can even take the free course on PR Media. Check out the complete HubSpot PR Plan template .

We’ve spent a lot of time discussing the ins and outs of media planning, but there’s another side that can help marketers on the job — media buying. Let’s get into it.

Digital media planning and media buying are closely related and work in tandem with one another. Depending on the size of your business and your budget, your team members who plan your media may also handle the media buying process.

So, what makes these processes unique?

Well, media planning is the process where you decide which media content is created, published, and shared among your customers and target audience. The media referred to here is all-encompassing, meaning it doesn’t always include paid ads and paid content.

This is where media planning and media buying differ.

What is media buying?

Media buying is related to paid media — whether that means your business is buying campaigns or ad space on various channels, paying to share targeted campaigns and ads, or negotiating with media vendors.

In a world where your business can share media and successfully reach your audience for free, media planning can happen without media buying.

However, media buying requires media planning. (It's like, "a square is a rectangle, but a rectangle is not a square" lesson that baffled us all in elementary school.)

Media planning sets the tone and direction for the buying that needs to occur. Once ad space is purchased or content distribution plans have been negotiated, there needs to be a strategy (or media plan) for getting that media to your audience and customers.

Media Planner

A media planner is also known as a brand strategist or a brand planner. They’re responsible for planning advertising strategies and creating campaigns for businesses.

If you don’t have an in-house media planner, you’ll need to consider hiring one to help you with the campaigns. But what does a media planner do? And how much will you need to part with to pay one? Below are the answers.

What Does a Media Planner Do?

A media planner takes over your whole media planning strategy, evaluates it, and advises you on the way forward.

Here are some roles that a media planner will handle in your company.

  • Maximizing the impact on all advertisements you pay by networking with media buying agencies
  • Coming up with creative ways to reach out to your target audiences for better engagement and conversion rates
  • Identifying the best platforms for your business to ensure you’re spending your ad money where you’re likely to get returns

How Much Do Media Planners Make?

When working with a media planner, expect to pay them between $30,000-$150,000. According to Comparably , the median salary of media planners in the US is $54,500.

If you need an expert planner with many years of experience, then you’ll need to plan for $155,000.

However, you can always save money by paying a freelance media planner. Their hourly charges may be a bit higher, but you’ll only need to pay them when you have a project.

Begin Your Media Planning Process

Media planning is an integral part of your business’s ability to successfully create, publish, and share media content. It’s how you streamline cross-team communication and collaboration around your media, as well as ensure it’s shared with your audience in a timely fashion. So, work through the media planning process steps above and choose which templates you’ll use to begin reaching and converting more audience members.

Editor's note: This post was originally published in February 2020 and has been updated for comprehensiveness.

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Must-Have Media Company Business Plan Templates with Samples and Examples

Must-Have Media Company Business Plan Templates with Samples and Examples

Falak Chandna


Introducing the all-inclusive media company business plan template, thoughtfully designed to provide you with both a solid foundation and inspirational samples and examples. In today's rapidly evolving media landscape, a well-structured business plan is the compass that will guide your company to success. Whether you're seeking funding, outlining your growth strategies, or defining your unique value proposition, this template has got you covered. We understand the overwhelming challenges and opportunities in the media industry, and our aim is to help you craft a compelling narrative that showcases your vision and attracts the right stakeholders. Let's embark on this transformative journey together, empowering your media company to flourish and make a lasting impact in the world of media and entertainment.

Template 1: Media Service Provider Company Business Plan

This carefully-crafted document combines the practicality of strategic planning with the appeal of visual storytelling, presenting your business model, target audience, revenue streams, and competitive advantage in a concise and compelling manner. Whether you're seeking investors, partners, or you own an Event Management Company , this versatile resource will elevate your pitch to new heights, providing a clear roadmap for success in the dynamic and ever-evolving media industry.

Media Service Provider Company Business Plan Canvas Report

Download Now

Template 2: Media and Entertainment Company Profitable Business Model

It is a strategic framework designed to analyze and optimize the business model of a Digital Media and entertainment company. It incorporates key components such as Customer Segments (CP), Value Propositions (VP), Customer Relationships (CR), Revenue Streams (RS), Key Resources (KR), Key Activities (KA), Key Partnerships (KP), Cost Structure (CS), and Sales Channels (SC). By utilizing this canvas, media and entertainment companies can identify their target audience, tailor their value offerings, enhance customer relationships, diversify revenue streams, leverage essential resources, form strategic partnerships, manage costs efficiently, and optimize sales channels.

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Over To You

The media company business plan templates present a powerful and indispensable resource for aspiring entrepreneurs and established businesses in the media industry. Using our B usiness Plan  PPT Sets, you can gain a clear understanding of the essential components required to create a robust and compelling business plan. These templates cover critical aspects such as market analysis, competitive positioning, target audience identification, revenue generation strategies, and operational planning. As you embark on your media venture, these business plan templates will serve as your roadmap, guiding you toward achieving your goals and making a significant impact in the vibrant and ever-evolving world of media and entertainment. Embrace this invaluable tool, and let your media company flourish with confidence and innovation.

Frequently Asked Questions on Business Plan

How do i write a business plan for a media company.

Writing a business plan for a media company requires a structured approach and careful consideration of various elements. Start by conducting thorough market research to understand the media industry's current trends and opportunities. Define your company's vision, mission, and objectives, as well as your unique value proposition. Identify your target audience and outline your products or services. Include details about your marketing and sales strategies, competitive analysis, and financial projections. Additionally, highlight the key team members and their roles in the company. Be sure to review and revise the plan regularly to keep it updated and aligned with your evolving business needs.

What is the business description of a media company?

The business description of a media company provides an overview of the company's nature, goals, and offerings. It typically includes information about the company's history, its mission and vision, the types of media services or products it provides, and its target market. The business description should also highlight the company's unique value proposition, which sets it apart from competitors. Additionally, it may mention the company's achievements, key milestones, and any notable partnerships or affiliations.

What are media business models?

Media business models are strategies and frameworks used by media companies to generate revenue. These models include advertising-based, subscription-based, pay-per-view, freemium, licensing and syndication, affiliate marketing, and content creation and distribution models. Companies often use a mix of these approaches to diversify their income streams and adapt to industry changes.

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How To Write a Digital Media Business Plan + Template


Creating a business plan is essential for any business, but it can be especially helpful for digital media businesses that want to improve their strategy and/or raise funding.

A well-crafted business plan not only outlines the vision for your company, but also documents a step-by-step roadmap of how you are going to accomplish it. In order to create an effective business plan, you must first understand the components that are essential to its success.

This article provides an overview of the key elements that every digital media business owner should include in their business plan.

Download the Digital Marketing Agency Business Plan Template

What is a Digital Media Business Plan?

A digital media business plan is a formal written document that describes your company’s business strategy and its feasibility. It documents the reasons you will be successful, your areas of competitive advantage, and it includes information about your team members. Your business plan is a key document that will convince investors and lenders (if needed) that you are positioned to become a successful venture.

Why Write a Digital Media Business Plan?

A digital media business plan is required for banks and investors. The document is a clear and concise guide of your business idea and the steps you will take to make it profitable.

Entrepreneurs can also use this as a roadmap when starting their new company or venture, especially if they are inexperienced in starting a business.

Writing an Effective Digital Media Business Plan

The following are the key components of a successful digital media business plan:

Executive Summary

The executive summary of a digital media business plan is a one to two page overview of your entire business plan. It should summarize the main points, which will be presented in full in the rest of your business plan.

  • Start with a one-line description of your digital media business
  • Provide a short summary of the key points in each section of your business plan, which includes information about your company’s management team, industry analysis, competitive analysis, and financial forecast among others.

Company Description

This section should include a brief history of your company. Include a short description of how your company started, and provide a timeline of milestones your company has achieved.

If you are just starting your digital media business , you may not have a long company history. Instead, you can include information about your professional experience in this industry and how and why you conceived your new venture. If you have worked for a similar company before or have been involved in an entrepreneurial venture before starting your digital media business, mention this.

You will also include information about your chosen digital media business model and how, if applicable, it is different from other companies in your industry.

Industry Analysis

The industry or market analysis is an important component of a digital media business plan. Conduct thorough market research to determine industry trends and document the size of your market. 

Questions to answer include:

  • What part of the digital media industry are you targeting?
  • How big is the market?
  • What trends are happening in the industry right now (and if applicable, how do these trends support the success of your company)?

You should also include sources for the information you provide, such as published research reports and expert opinions.

Customer Analysis

This section should include a list of your target audience(s) with demographic and psychographic profiles (e.g., age, gender, income level, profession, job titles, interests). You will need to provide a profile of each customer segment separately, including their needs and wants.

For example, the customers of a digital media business may include businesses that need marketing help, as well as individuals who want to improve their personal brand.

You can include information about how your customers make the decision to buy from you as well as what keeps them buying from you.

Develop a strategy for targeting those customers who are most likely to buy from you, as well as those that might be influenced to buy your products or digital media services with the right marketing.

Competitive Analysis

The competitive analysis helps you determine how your product or service will be different from competitors, and what your unique selling proposition (USP) might be that will set you apart in this industry.

For each competitor, list their strengths and weaknesses. Next, determine your areas of competitive differentiation and/or advantage; that is, in what ways are you different from and ideally better than your competitors.

Below are sample competitive advantages your digital media business may have:

  • Strong management team with a wealth of industry experience
  • Proven track record of success with similar businesses
  • Robust and innovative technology platform
  • Strong partnerships with complementary businesses
  • Access to a large and growing customer base
  • Ability to scale quickly to meet customer demand
  • Favorable pricing structure

Marketing Plan

This part of the business plan is where you determine and document your marketing plan. . Your plan should be clearly laid out, including the following 4 Ps.

  • Product/Service : Detail your product/service offerings here. Document their features and benefits.
  • Price : Document your pricing strategy here. In addition to stating the prices for your products/services, mention how your pricing compares to your competition.
  • Place : Where will your customers find you? What channels of distribution (e.g., partnerships) will you use to reach them if applicable?
  • Promotion : How will you reach your target customers? For example, you may use social media, write blog posts, create an email marketing campaign, use pay-per-click advertising, launch a direct mail campaign. Or, you may promote your digital media business via a combination of these channels.

Operations Plan

This part of your digital media business plan should include the following information:

  • How will you deliver your product/service to customers? For example, will you do it in person or over the phone only?
  • What infrastructure, equipment, and resources are needed to operate successfully? How can you meet those requirements within budget constraints?

The operations plan is where you also need to include your company’s business policies. You will want to establish policies related to everything from customer service to pricing, to the overall brand image you are trying to present.

Finally, and most importantly, in your Operations Plan, you will lay out the milestones your company hopes to achieve within the next five years. Create a chart that shows the key milestone(s) you hope to achieve each quarter for the next four quarters, and then each year for the following four years. Examples of milestones for a digital media business include reaching $X in sales. Other examples include adding new customers, launching new services, and expanding to new markets.

Management Team

List your team members here including their names and titles, as well as their expertise and experience relevant to your specific digital media industry. Include brief biography sketches for each team member.

Particularly if you are seeking funding, the goal of this section is to convince investors and lenders that your team has the expertise and experience to execute on your plan. If you are missing key team members, document the roles and responsibilities you plan to hire for in the future.

Financial Plan

Here you will include a summary of your complete and detailed financial plan (your full financial projections go in the Appendix). 

This includes the following three financial statements:

Income Statement

Your income statement should include:

  • Revenue : how much revenue you generate.
  • Cost of Goods Sold : These are your direct costs associated with generating revenue. This includes labor costs, as well as the cost of any equipment and supplies used to deliver the product/service offering.
  • Net Income (or loss) : Once expenses and revenue are totaled and deducted from each other, this is the net income or loss.

Sample Income Statement for a Startup Digital Media Business

Balance sheet.

Include a balance sheet that shows your assets, liabilities, and equity. Your balance sheet should include:

  • Assets : All of the things you own (including cash).
  • Liabilities : This is what you owe against your company’s assets, such as accounts payable or loans.
  • Equity : The worth of your business after all liabilities and assets are totaled and deducted from each other.

Sample Balance Sheet for a Startup Digital Media Business

Cash flow statement.

Include a cash flow statement showing how much cash comes in, how much cash goes out and a net cash flow for each year. The cash flow statement should include:

  • Cash Flow From Operations
  • Cash Flow From Investments
  • Cash Flow From Financing

Below is a sample of a projected cash flow statement for a startup digital media business .

Sample Cash Flow Statement for a Startup Digital Media Business

You will also want to include an appendix section which will include:

  • Your complete financial projections
  • A complete list of your company’s business policies and procedures related to the rest of the business plan (marketing, operations, etc.)
  • Any other documentation which supports what you included in the body of your business plan.

Writing a good business plan gives you the advantage of being fully prepared to launch and/or grow your digital media business . It not only outlines your business vision but also provides a step-by-step process of how you are going to accomplish it.

If you are seeking funding from investors or lenders, it is especially important to have a well-written business plan that demonstrates the expertise and experience of your management team, as well as your company’s potential for financial success. By taking the time to write a detailed and comprehensive business plan, you will give your digital media business the best chance for success.  

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  1. How to Start a Digital Media Company

    14 Steps To Start a Digital Media Company: Choose the Name for Your Digital Media Company. Develop Your Digital Media Company Business Plan. Choose the Legal Structure for Your Digital Media Company. Secure Startup Funding for Your Digital Media Company (If Needed) Secure a Location for Your Business.

  2. How to Start a Media Business in 6 Simple Steps

    Create a plan for your business; Sign up for media planning software; Identify your target audience; Register your business; Start creating content; Choose how you’ll make money; The Easy Parts of Starting a Media Business. Not everything about starting a media business has to be complicated.

  3. Media Planning: The Ultimate Guide

    Media planning is the process of determining how, when, where, and why your business shares media content with your audience. The process includes deciding what media will be shared and which channels you’ll use to boost reach, engagements, conversions, ROI, and more.

  4. Media & Entertainment Business Plan Examples

    More Resources. See more business plan examples. Learn more about our business plan preparation services. Learn more about our Media & Entertainment business planning experience. Read testimonials by our Media & Entertainment clients. Help me write a great Media & Entertainment business plan!

  5. How to Write Media Company Business Plan? Template & Guide

    Template & Guide. Ivan Smith. ·. Follow. 5 min read. ·. Dec 29, 2023. -- Crafting a Vision: The Ultimate Media Company Business Plan. In the fast-evolving landscape of media and...

  6. How To Create a Media Plan: Step by Step

    Media planning is the process of determining how, when, and where your ads are shown to a targeted audience. Knowing the why behind your media plan will help you maximize your ad campaign’s reach. A media plan guides the media planning process. Think of it as a blueprint for your campaign efforts.

  7. Must-Have Media Company Business Plan Templates ...

    Template 1: Media Service Provider Company Business Plan. This carefully-crafted document combines the practicality of strategic planning with the appeal of visual storytelling, presenting your business model, target audience, revenue streams, and competitive advantage in a concise and compelling manner.

  8. How To Write a Digital Media Business Plan + Template

    A digital media business plan is a formal written document that describes your company’s business strategy and its feasibility. It documents the reasons you will be successful, your areas of competitive advantage, and it includes information about your team members.