There are multiple challenges we come across on a daily basis. Big or small, there’s always something that tests our limits and capabilities. But the key challenge lies in our ability to embrace change! Just like any other industry, the publishing landscape has been undergoing a significant transition into the digital age. It has been an interesting time for the publishers as it has brought in new challenges and opportunities.
Keeping the dynamic nature of the publishing industry in mind, it’s important that publishers use new ideas and technologies to reinvent themselves. So here are some key challenges faced by the publishing industry today:
1. Consumption Modes:
Over time, publishers have evolved from print to eBooks, audiobooks and other mediums for delivering content. To tap into new audiences and provide accessible content, publishers need to work hard in publishing content in multiple formats. Restricting the readers to one format can place heavy reliance on a particular source. To maximize audience reach, the industry must look into other formats such as ePUB, MOBI, PDF, and audiobooks.
2. Audience Demographics:
To ensure that the content is relevant and relatable, publishers need to have a greater understanding of their target audience. Making assumptions can be a huge risk. Research plays a vital role in gaining insights into the potential target audience. As a publisher, it can be difficult to gain access to legitimate demographics. Some analytics tools such as Google Analytics and Chartbeat offer insights into legitimate demographics and help publishers choose the right target audience to expand their reach and stay ahead of the competition.
3. Quality vs. Cost:
We have all heard of the proverb, “Don’t judge a book by its cover”, but literally we all do judge a book by its cover. That’s what a cover is for! The aesthetics of a book have always been important to the readers. Some publishers today focus on minimizing costs which affects the overall quality of the book. Matching the quality of the book to high standards can lead publishers to increase sales, as well as create an excellent reading experience for readers.
4. The Rise of Open Access:
Open access is witnessing an increase in adoption and rapidly gaining momentum in the publishing ecosystem. The community is now seeking new approaches to make science accessible to everyone. This has led to significant advancements, but there are several downsides too. According to Wiley, “OA provides opportunities for publishers, but it creates headaches and challenges as well. Publishers who move in the direction of Gold (i.e. author pays) OA face criticism for “double-dipping” and suspicion about quality control; those who embrace Green (i.e. self-archiving) OA face serious revenue challenges. There is no easy or simple way into an OA future.”
To reinvent and ensure survival, it’s vital to adopt digital technologies that can help publishers stay ahead. If you are a publisher and are facing any of these or other new challenges, I would love to hear from you on how you are addressing them. Buzz me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Image courtesy: Designed by Freepik