How Big Data Can Improve Content and Reader Engagement

data, big data, publishers, content, booksConsumption habits across industries, spanning different products and services, are evolving dramatically in the digital era. And the book publishing sector is not immune to these winds of change.

Like film, music and other forms of content, books, too, are undergoing a major transformation in terms of both development and distribution, thanks to rapidly changing customer expectations. Empowered readers today demand an intuitive user experience, as well as personalized, engaging and interactive content, for both academic and non-academic books.

Unfortunately, the near-term growth outlook for book publishers looks rather lackluster. According to a PwC report, the industry is expected to expand at a compound annual growth rate of about 1.7 percent over the next five years.

Suffice it to say, maintaining the status quo will not help. In order to sustain relevance in a dynamic marketplace—as well as boost revenues and profitability—publishers will have to embrace innovation by leveraging disruptive digital technologies. Specifically, they must overhaul their current approach toward product development and marketing for enhanced agility and customer alignment.

This requires compelling, actionable insights on readers’ behavior and needs that can foster smart decision-making.

Much more.

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Seth Godin’s Three Charges Against Publishers (BookMachine)
Publisher-bashing is a popular sport, particularly for authors. Always has been. We shouldn’t feel too special: we’re in good company along with lawyers, journalists, traffic wardens, estate agents and used-car salesmen as the punch-bag of the dispossessed and disenchanted.

How to Market Books from the Customer’s Perspective (Book Business)
What is the process you follow when you go to a store to buy something? You probably go to the most convenient place (bricks or clicks) and peruse the assortment available. You may search for a particular brand if you are aware of it. If not, you look at the prices to compare the value of the items to your needs. Then depending on the strength of your need compared to the available choices you decide to buy or wait.

BISG Looks Ahead to Restart (Pub Lunch)
The Book Industry Study Group convened their annual members meeting in New York — and marked their 40th anniversary — after an admittedly “tough year” with enthusiastic anticipation for incoming executive director Brian O’Leary and a new strategic plan to execute.

BISG at 40: A Fresh Look at Everything (Pub Perspectives)
As Book Industry Study Group members gather for a 40th annual meeting, the organization’s incoming director is focused on “execution against the objectives and strategies” of the group.

Sourcebooks Wins BISG Industry Innovation Award 2016 (Sourcebooks)
I’m incredibly honored to announce that Sourcebooks won the BISG Industry Innovation Award at the BISG Annual Meeting held today, September 30, 2016, which also happens to be Sourcebooks’ 29th birthday!

How Readerlink Became Main Book Distributor to Non-Bookstore Retailers (PW)
In the five years since Dennis Abboud bought the company, it has become the main book distributor to Target, Walmart, and other large nontrade outlets

Niche Bookstores Find Their Way (PW)
Having a niche—once regarded as a key to ensuring success against the onslaught of the chains, price clubs, and mass merchandisers—is no longer a guarantee for booksellers. The number of women’s bookstores has gone from a high of 120 in 1994 to less than a dozen today.

7 Ways Book Publishers Can Establish D2C Marketing (Book Business)
Book publishers aren’t strangers to D2C sales. Many have ecommerce components to their company websites, but they fail to drive significant book sale revenue.

Should You Attend a Writers’ Conference? (The Verbs)
Writers’ conferences can be expensive to attend (travel, conference tickets, food), intimidating (all those people!), and take time away from work, home, and writing. So why go? Here are a few reasons why attending at least one conference is an experience every writer should have.

More Authors and Back-to-Basics Programming Energize NEIBA 2016 (PW)
Children’s authors and illustrators along with children’s programming were deeply woven into the fabric of the 43rd annual New England Independent Booksellers Association fall conference, held at the Rhode Island Convention Center in Providence from September 20–22.


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