By now, it's become commonplace for most of us. We conduct an online search, view a product on a webpage, and the next thing we know, ads are popping up for the same and similar products every time we go online, whether we're on our desktop, laptop, tablet, or mobile device. The world of contextualized ads-or ads that are delivered to individuals based on some context-is exploding. Technology is driving the explosion and making possible some seemingly impossible things.
Posted Sep 22, 2014
The organization formerly known as the Online Publishers Association (OPA) recently announced a new name, Digital Content Next, a rebrand that it says signals a renewed focus on defining and confronting critical, big picture issues that its members face when creating digital content experiences for consumers and marketers. Digital Content Next (DCN) is a trade association that exclusively serves the diverse needs of digital content companies that manage direct, trusted relationships with consumers and marketers. The association hired a new CEO in May of this year, Jason Kint, former SVP and GM of CBS Interactive's Sports division, and welcomed six new members to its membership of 55 brands in early September. EContent intereviewed Kint about the future of DCN.
Posted Sep 19, 2014
On Thursday, September 18 the Online Publishers Association held its first event that was open to the public -- and then CEO Jason Kint announced that the organization was changing its name to Digital Content Next to reflect the changing industry. He did this at the end of a long, informative day at Content All Stars, where everyone from keynote Jason Silva to Werner Brell, managing director of Red Bull Media House to Soledad O'Brien shared their content secrets with the audience. Here are a few takeaways and themes from the day's programming that all content creators can learn from.
Posted Sep 19, 2014
My favorite part of any do-it-yourself show is the demolition. "Get all your aggression out," the bubbly host proclaims just before the token newlywed fumbles with the sledgehammer. I'm not alone because every one of these shows dedicates a segment to displaying a plume of dust. After all, you can't appreciate the shiny new kitchen if you don't show the studs and decaying wallpaper first. Why don't we extend the same logic to the new content we create on a daily (sometimes hourly) basis?
Posted Sep 16, 2014
From online magazines to electronic catalogs, brochures and photo galleries, digital flipbooks provide an interactive, dynamic, and visually attractive format for text, graphics, audio, links and other elements to coalesce into a more engaging and entertaining experience for users. And unlike a PDF, which doesn't always display well on every type of device, a smartly designed flipbook is ideal for multiplatform distribution.
Posted Sep 15, 2014
Amazon announced KDP Kids, designed to help children's book authors prepare, publish, and promote both illustrated and chapter books in Kindle Stores worldwide. Children's book authors can use the new Kindle Kids' Book Creator tool to create illustrated children's books that take advantage of Kindle features like text pop-ups. Once the book is ready, authors can upload it to KDP, and use KDP's category, age and grade range filters to help millions of Amazon customers choose the right books for their kids.
Posted Sep 04, 2014
Thanks to ever-improving technology, ebooks can be produced relatively quickly and economically compared to their traditional print cousins. But with the temptation to capitalize on speed and low cost, it's easy for publishers to cut corners on quality, especially when it comes to things that affect look, layout, and readability-such as proper conversion of text, images, and other elements from a print book to an ebook. And because churning out sloppy electronic copy can potentially turn off customers, content providers are worried.
Posted Aug 27, 2014
Despite the fact that the Author Earnings Reports, published by writer Hugh Howey and his anonymous partner Data Guy, has added fodder to the traditional vs. self-publishing debate, for many independent writers the reports are not at all surprising. The stated primary purpose of the site is "to gather and share information so that writers can make informed decisions." Independent writers, however, are finding that the reports mostly confirm what they already knew, and their decision-making processes have changed very little, if at all.
Posted Aug 06, 2014
Publishing startup Tablo announced the launch of new social features for its cloud-based ebook publishing service. This marks the biggest shift in the platform since its launch in 2013. Off the back of a seed funding round, the developments are part of a wider effort to transform the writer from a solitary character into a social one by encouraging collaboration among authors and likeminded individuals within an online community.
Posted Jul 31, 2014
A blog post on Amazon's Kindle forum gave some insight into the ongoing feud between the internet retailer and Hachette, one of the Big 5 publishers. Negotiations broke down months ago, and Amazon stopped allowing pre-orders of Hachette books and users reported delayed shipping on the publisher's books. Many asked if Amazon had too much power including big name authors. Now, Amazon is making it clear what's at stake: lower ebook prices and 30% cut for Amazon.
Posted Jul 31, 2014
Amazon Publishing and Alloy Entertainment, a division of Warner Bros. Television Group, announced a digital-first imprint that will focus on young adult, new adult, and commercial fiction. The new imprint, named Alloy Entertainment, will be part of Amazon Publishing's Powered by Amazon program.
Posted Jul 29, 2014
Brainstorming about the future of digital consumption can leave you overwhelmed by the possibilities, but data released from YouGov--a global research and consulting organization--sheds some light on the emerging expectations of today's youth. The study found that nearly one in two children, aged 8-15, feel that access to online content and downloads should be free.
Posted Jul 23, 2014
Few companies have the potential to dramatically alter the electronic content landscape like Google, which continues to regularly roll out new apps, tools and technologies that make digital publishers sit up and take notice. It's a big reason why Google's annual I/O conference is so closely watched by players in the industry. I/O 2014, held in late June, didn't fail to excite those eager to read the tech tea leaves and develop forward-thinking strategies for success. Here are five of the top takeaways from the conference of importance to content providers.
Posted Jul 16, 2014
Condé Nast is a New York-based media company that produces many globally known print, digital, and video titles. Its portfolio includes such titles as Vogue, Vanity Fair, Glamour, Brides, SELF, GQ, The New Yorker, Condé Nast Traveler, DETAILS, Allure, Architectural Digest, bon appétit, Epicurious, WIRED, W, Lucky, Golf Digest, Golf World, Teen Vogue, and Ars Technica. After launching The New Yorker's iPhone edition, Condé Nast was looking to do the same with Vanity Fair. However, the company knew that the same solution would not work for the two very different magazines.
Posted Jul 14, 2014
Now if publishers like the New York Times can offer such a variety of digital options for consumers to choose from, why can't they give advertisers more options when placing a digital ad to reach those consumers? Giving people choices works. And if print subscriptions have decreased, wouldn't it make more sense for media companies to focus on creating more dynamic digital ad options for customers looking to advertise?
Posted Jul 03, 2014
One of the more recent movements in the technology sector--which has emerged as a bona fide standard practice in numerous industries--is cloud-based computing. Without even thinking about it, in fact, many of the most routine activities that businesses have come to rely on-think Gmail or Salesforce.com-are built on cloud-based principles, where information, storage, and processing are housed and managed in off-site data centers as opposed to a company's own local servers or hard drives. For publishers contemplating moving aspects of their business practice to the cloud, there is plenty of experience and expertise to rely on during the course of the decision-making process; indeed, they may already be deeper into the cloud than they realize.
Posted Jun 23, 2014
AddThis announced an online marketplace featuring tools that enable online publishers to serve more targeted and relevant content to website visitors. The company has also expanded its offerings of recommended content and enhanced its analytics dashboard.
Posted Jun 19, 2014
I admit it: I'm in the demographic that still likes print newspapers and magazines. And I'm in good company. Jeffrey Bezos, who bought The Washington Post and related newspapers, said in an interview with The Post last year that if he had both the print and tablet editions in front of him, he'd pick the print version, "an elegant product that has evolved over decades."
Posted Jun 17, 2014
From the experience of publishing her first book with the Penguin Group Australia, Boling had firsthand knowledge of the disruption underway in traditional publishing. "I knew, with this book, that I wanted to start from a spot ahead of the curve from a technical standpoint," Boling says. Historical fiction, she believes, is a perfect genre for allowing readers to enrich their reading experience by referring to maps, character biographies, photos, and drawings. But Boling was adamant about not allowing those enhancements to interrupt the flow of the story. "I thought a lot about how I could use technology developments to provide a great reader experience, something that would provide seamless integration between the story and the technology," she says.
Posted Jun 16, 2014
A new platform, BlogMeetsBrand.com, allows marketers to build custom social campaigns that channel the value of bloggers and other social drivers. Blog Meets Brand features a self-serve campaign planning module that gives marketers, PR Firms, Ad Agencies, and small businesses a structured approach for creating and developing influencer marketing programs.
Posted Jun 13, 2014
If you are involved with any type of enterprise software, you've probably considered some sort of cloud-based deployment model. Publishing is no different, and in Real Story Group's numerous advisory engagements with customers, discussions about the cloud are becoming increasingly common.
Posted Jun 04, 2014
De Gruyter announced that all of its frontlist titles are now available in the ePub3 format. Alongside the PDF format, ePub is one of the most widely used ebook standards, enabling the mobile viewing of content on tablets, smartphones, and e-readers.
Posted May 29, 2014
A division of Simon & Schuster, Atria Publishing Group, is teaming up with United Talent Agency to create a new imprint-Keyword Press- that will focus on providing an outlet for social media stars. According to the New York Times, five book deals have already been made with the likes of YouTube personalities Shane Dawson and Justine Ezarik.
Posted May 27, 2014
I spent a couple of years working in book publishing during my 20s. I learned a lot while I was there, but one of the things that surprised me most was that the book industry operates solely on the gut feelings of its editors and publishers. That was fine when book publishing was more a gentleman's hobby than a legitimate business, but these days, book publishers are integral parts of the money-making media empires of people such as Rupert Murdoch.
Posted May 27, 2014
The Alliance for Audited Media recently released its look at U.S. and Canadian newspaper circulation figures for the first half of 2014 and its annual newspaper snapshot had some positive takeaways for those in the digital news industry. Neal Lulofs, AAM's executive vice president, marketing and strategy, says the report shows a continuing transition to a media cross channel environment in terms of how newspapers are publishing content and engaging with readers.
Posted May 23, 2014