5 thoughts on “Discoverability: The New King of Publishing

  1. Robert Gottlieb

    Publishers historically have struggled creating business models that reach out directly to the book consumer for decades.

    Historically publishers have heavily relied on retailers in this area. Reviews and word of mouth is what publishers have rely on.

    Today many publishers have increased efforts to reach book consumers. Too often publishers rely on a book being published in order to get their machinery in place. More effort is needed to brand authors throughout the year and make the consumer aware of the author as a brand. This strategy at present does not exists in publishing today. It is costly but I believe would be very beneficial and economically rewarding in the end for publishers.

    Robert Gottlieb
    Trident Media Group, LLC
    Literary Agency
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  2. Thad McIlroy

    Some good advice here, but a central part of your argument is, I think, unlikely to produce any results. You write “if online retailers were to get their hands on rich metadata descriptions of each book, we would most likely see an explosion of new solutions for the discovery of books” and “… get in touch with your retailers and talk about how you can best deliver (metadata) to them.”

    For English-language books, “your retailers” = Amazon, and then some others. Amazon imports very little metadata (if measured against what is supported through ONIX 3.0 and associated standards, BISAC, ISNI, etc.). Publishers that I speak to realize that adding richness to metadata makes no difference if the largest online ebook retailer won’t ingest it.

    Further, unless you are a big-5 publisher, the notion of getting in touch with Amazon and talking about metadata is laughable: there’s no one home. Amazon doesn’t designate CSRs to work with publishers on metadata. When I, as a consultant, try to reach anyone on Amazon’s metadata team (as identified via LinkedIn) my email is never acknowledged.

    Yes, indeed, there are a host of opportunities afforded by metadata. But few of those opportunities provide a payback when the customer controlling 70% of your sales is deaf to the promise.

  3. Glenn McCreedy

    Rich metadata of the kind described here not only increases discoverability through resellers, it also opens up new possibilities for third-party companies including strategic partners and brand advertisers to reach their targeted consumers and business customers through fiction and non-fiction publications and generate new revenue streams for authors and publishers. The data derived from and applied by using this “semantic engine” enables intelligent decisioning that maximizes success for all parties in a multi-sided platform.

    The key is to create context out of the unstructured text in the book, in a way that opens up access to the medium and its content. This requires a system and method, in the parlance of natural language processing, for feature selection and classification within the ebook (print can benefit also but to a much lesser degree).

    Algorithms designed with these specific purposes and goals in mind will do the best job in delivering these results.

    Glenn McCreedy
    CEO and Co-Founder

  4. Felicity Jones

    Two of my favorite authors, Pantson Fire, “Zombie Man,” “We used to be Shakers,” and B. Sting “Balboa and the Cyborg,” write graphic novel romances, and often have their books translated into Spanish and French, which helps their international discoverability. One should not forget our global connectivity, especially with ebooks.



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