Building the reputation of a journal is like the chicken and egg question. To get recognition, you need to publish high-quality research. But to attract submissions from top researchers, your journal needs good rankings and impact factor.
So how do new journals break out of this vicious cycle?
In this blog, we will explore several different aspects of journal reputation management. We will cover a few actionable points that can help new journals rise from the position of obscurity to highly respected with conscious and ethical efforts.
1.) Attract submissions from notable scholars
Great content leads to more readership, which leads to more citations and more submissions. But for journals that are just getting started and have no reputation, attracting submissions from top scholars might seem impossible. However, Pippa Smart of Learned Publishing shared interesting advice on a webinar regarding this.
Instead of going for the original research of top authors in your niche, he recommended inviting these authors to submit their commentaries, short pieces, and editorials to build the reputation of the journal.
2.) Educate authors to improve the reach of their research
Prepare a checklist for all authors telling them how they can increase the impact of their research and promote it across platforms. Brief them how this can improve the citation count of their papers and trigger an automated email that goes out to every author the day their work is published in your journal.
Getting a manuscript published is in itself a congratulatory moment for authors and without any clear direction, most authors tend to leave the promotion of their research up to the journal or word of mouth. Giving them an actionable checklist of what they should do next will spiral them into taking the steps necessary for promotion and in turn, also improve the cumulative visibility and citation count of your journal.
Besides, every journal has a sharing policy. Reputed publishers provide authors a sharable link of their work to make it easier for authors to gain initial traction for their research by sharing it in their network via email, social media, and other online platforms. This allows unlimited downloads and provides access to the HTML and PDF files of the research.
While reputed publishers like Taylor & Francis and Elsevier restrict this free access to certain number of days, new journals should consider having a more liberal share policy or even consider making articles free or open access to improve discoverability.
3.) Help authors believe that the impact factor will increase
A strong editorial board, appropriate reviewers who are eminent scholars in the field and backing from an established publisher play a key role in taking a new journal to heights of success. When a group of famous academics come together or become a part of a new journal, they bring their credibility and reputation to the table. This helps authors believe that even though the journal doesn’t have a good impact factor yet, the journal will adhere to higher publishing and editorial standards and will soon get there.
There are 3 more actionable points associated with improving the impact factor. They would be covered in Part II of this blog.
Before you go,
Talk to us if you are targeting to improve your impact factor
A) Questionable practices for increasing Journal Impact Factor
- Is getting a high JIF at all costs worth it? The prospect of it might seem tempting but the editorial board of the journal must uphold the integrity of science and not succumb to gaming the system.
If you are associated with a journal, reply back with your thoughts in the comments.
B) Few Important Tools for Journals/Publishers: