“The United States has been at the forefront of digital publishing since the field’s inception,” writes Holger Volland, vice president of the Frankfurt Book Fair, in a blog post for Digital Book World. “And now, as digital is fully integrated into our daily publishing lives and the industry continues to expand the format of books and data analytics, the US market continues to lead.”
“While there has been a lull as ebook sales level out and digital startups and initiatives falter,” Volland continues, “this year has nevertheless seen the reimagining of some of publishing’s earliest digital innovators to adapt to the changing face of the industry.”
And so to highlight the current state of the market and forecast how digital publishing will change in the US and around the world in the next several years, the Frankfurt Book Fair has highlighted US Digital Innovation as one of the seven markets at its inaugural conference.
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A Manifesto for Flexing the Publishing Model (Futurebook)
“Ultimately, publishing comes down to six irreducible elements,” says publishing consultant Alison Jones. She continues: “It always amazes me how many people still formulate the debate on the future of publishing as a straight choice between print and ebook… What’s more interesting is what we’re doing digitally.”
Kobo Launches Super Points Loyalty Program (Digital Reader)
Kobo has found a new way to encourage customer loyalty in a market where six major US publishers are restricting price discounting. The ebook retailer is launching a loyalty program called Super Points. Modeled on the mileage reward programs offered by many airlines, Kobo Super Points rewards Kobo customers for buying ebooks and digital magazines.
A Self-Published Future for University Presses? (Publishing Technology)
Last week, Alliant International University, a private US college, announced a scholarly publishing partnership with Author Solutions, the self-publishing arm of Penguin Random House. Together, the two organizations said they were creating Alliant Press, a university press that would be built using Author Solutions infrastructure and be dedicated to publishing “academic works of AIU students, scholars, alumni, staff and other select authors.” Author Solutions’ official announcement presents this partnership as a “new model of academic publishing,” and it’s certainly innovative from several different points of view. Yet whether it truly does present a model that could be applied more widely across the scholarly publishing sector is open to debate.
Apple Launches iBooks in China (Digital Reader)
Apple launched iBooks in China on Wednesday, along with iTunes (movies) and Apple Music.
iBooks carries a broad catalog of English-language titles as well as a wide selection of both paid and free Chinese language books from top local publishers.
7 Tips for Using Search Engines to Market Your Book (MediaShift)
Google: it’s the black box that no one really knows what goes on inside. However, there are a few things you can do to optimize your site so that it can rank higher on Google. After all, what’s the point of having a webpage if potential readers can’t find it in search?
How Public Libraries Are Evolving Digitally (Overdrive)
In advance of the American Library Association’s Libraries Transforming Communities initiative, ebook platform OverDrive conducted an end user survey from June 26th through July 15th, 2015. Administered via library websites, the survey collected input from 16,756 respondents. This report will utilize this data to examine the positive effect the shift to digital content has had on the role of libraries in their communities by helping attract new readers, serve existing patrons better and reach beyond their physical walls.
Blackstone Audio Launches Print Imprint (PW)
Oregon-based audiobook publisher Blackstone is expanding into print with the launch of Blackstone Publishing, which will release classic and original contemporary titles in both print and ebook, beginning in fall 2015.