The Evolution of Content In The Publishing Industry
Since the earliest days of commercialized publishing, books are what defined the publishing industry. But as we entered the digital era, everything changed. Digital Publishing or ePublishing is what dominates the industry as a whole. In other words, content is the defining word of the publishing hemisphere and it is what drives its revenue in the market today.
In the 21st century, one of the more game-changing advents of new publishing content was the arrival of eBooks. With the arrival of eBooks, printed books have actually taken a back seat. For instance, The U.K’s biggest publisher, Penguin Random House, is closing its largest distribution center and is citing the reason as “an increase in the people reading eBooks.” Print sales were down 5 percent while eBook sales were up 11 percent. New technology has advanced publishing into areas no one thought possible. Over the last decade, there has been an increasing demand for businesses to bring their content online.
Digital conversion is in many different formats. For instance, a law firm may want all their case files to be digitized for easy access. Publishers now employ tech teams that provide solutions or platforms that actually make the workflow process easier and cheaper. In the past, they would have a sent a paralegal to locate a very old case file, which would have wasted valuable man-hours. Therefore, the return on investment is higher for the law firm as they save money on printed material, less staff and a more streamlined work atmosphere. Publishers and publishing service providers are now becoming trailblazers in content development and conversion to new media by embracing innovative technological methods to create new revenue streams.
Publishers are always seeking new ways to boost their revenues. Content Monetization has become central to publishers around the world doing just that. For instance, some publishers and content creators have taken to online platforms where they can buy, sell and trade their assets across the world. The other methods have more to do with distributing content such as eBooks on automated marketing platforms. This would require content to provide samples of their material such as book previews so that the consumer or reader can make an informed decision. Another method that has received traction is the subscription based model. Publishers see subscriptions as a steady stream of revenue because a subscription generally requires a medium term or long term commitment from subscribers. However, publishers have discovered that some consumers are willing to pay for a single item or micro payment when offered, even though subscription may offer a financial advantage. Both subscription and micro payment models can co-exist to segment consumers based on their preferences.
Another area where content publishing is moving towards is content for mobile devices. For publishers, there has been an increase in the need for interactive and customized content. For instance, corporate training via mobile devices has become a very important trend in the corporate world. Content creators and publishing service providers are creating training modules that reduce the training time and improve knowledge retention rates.
With the advance of 3d technology and devices like the Oculus, content will continue to evolve with the technology. Publishers that move with the latest market trends will emerge as winners in the wide sea of the publishing industry.