Finding New Paths to Digital Readers

shutterstock_237698965The digital market isn’t just rewriting the retail and marketing playbooks. As Paper Lantern Lit co-founders Lauren Oliver and Lexa Hillyer see it, publishers must experiment with new approaches to the entire content lifecycle and the readers at its center.

In the years ahead, Oliver predicts, “we’ll continue to see attempts to unify branded authors and books with other ancillary forms of entertainment in central spaces online.”

That means thinking beyond direct-to-consumer sales or digital marketing strategies, which kick in only after the content is conceived and produced.

Pointing to Paper Lantern Lit’s model, Hillyer sees publishers as being in the business of “building an experience. In the future we aim to expand this ‘story experience’ across other media, explore building story around brand partnerships and other new strategies.”

“The fans are there, online, looking to be fed,” she adds. “Publishers need to figure out how to feed them.”


Related: Lauren Oliver and Lexa Hillyer Join the Publishers Launch Kids Conference at DBW15

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Apple’s Appeal: Inside the Courtroom (Pub Lunch)
Reporting on the oral arguments in Apple’s appeal hearing yesterday, Publishers Lunch says it’s difficult to speculate how the panel will rule (though some say otherwise), but the proceedings “did show the court would not spare any side thorough questioning–often to entertaining effect.” Here’s a glimpse of what unfolded.

Why Apple Should Win Its Appeal (WSJ)
The book industry has by now grown used to debating what does and doesn’t constitute anti-competitive behavior among ebook retailers like Amazon and Apple. As the latter appeals District Judge Denise Cote’s recent ruling against it, an expert on antitrust law explains why, in his view, Apple is justified in claiming Cote erred.

Kindle Updates iOS Apps (The Digital Reader)
The update Amazon institutes to its Kindle apps for the iPad and iPhone includes better integration with Audible, its digital audiobook platform, and new features meant to pique readers’ interest in Kindle Unlimited, Amazon’s ebook subscription service.
Related: The Future of Subscription Ebooks Reconsidered at DBW15

Google Doubles Down on E-Commerce (WSJ)
Taking aim at Amazon, Google fine-tunes its e-commerce capabilities in order to reduce friction in the user experience and keep customers inside its own ecosystem. Here are some of the tech company’s latest initiatives.

U.S. Trade Sales Dipped in September (Pub Lunch)
The latest sales figures from the Association of American Publishers show trade books in the U.S. declined 7% in September 2014. The culprit is disappointing sales in the adult category, which has been weak all year. Nevertheless, trade sales overall are up 3% for the year.

Indie Authors Entering the Rights Market (PW)
Many best-selling self-published authors are no strangers at all to the international rights market, successfully licensing translations of their work all around the world. Now, self-publishing platforms and service providers are proliferating in order to help more authors do just that.
Related: Why the Rights Market Deserves a Second Look

Legal Issues Hinder Ebook Accessibility (Wired)
This long-read explores the current array of copyright issues and accessibility barriers that prevent many vision-impaired readers from gaining access to digital content legally.

Webcast Today: Rethinking Social Media in Book Marketing (DBW)
By now you’ve probably already heard that the second installment in this month’s two-part webcast series on digital book marketing kicks off at noon EST today. So consider this a last invitation to this afternoon’s in-depth tutorial in how to amplify and drive social media activity back to publishers’ and authors’ all-important websites. Register here.


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