Two Innovative Observations About the Current State of Publishing
After returning from a publishing conference in Charleston, publishing consultant and DBW partner Mike Shatzkin came up with two ideas that he thinks are new to the publishing world:
1. Apps that deliver information and guidance to consumers when and where they need it will win the future. Imagine a gardening app that helps a reader keep track of and maintain their garden with timely reminders and advice on how to make a once-weedy backyard bloom. Kind of makes a gardening book seem…out of date.
Shatzkin suggests, “When that day comes, the publisher with the really terrific gardening book better hope they’ve made a good licensing deal with the owner of the app.”
2. Shatzkin, along with DigitalBookWorld.com, has been a proponent of simplifying publisher branding. Read: minimizing the number of brands publishers support, meaning the reduction of the number of imprints or, in an extreme case, the abolition of imprints altogether.
In this piece, Shatzkin updates his position. “As we see increasingly that self-published material can reach extremely large audiences, it will probably become important before long for the established publishers to be able to test titles in the marketplace without doing the full editorial job on them,” he writes.
The larger message is, in a world where the amount of content is multiplying and the levels of quality of content available to readers are doing the same, why would a publisher want to lock itself into creating content of only one level of quality? Multiple brand levels would allow publishers to publish lower quality, lower investment content when advantageous. Think Giorgio Armani vs. Emporio Armani.
Read his entire post here.