Clearly there are a number of digital media publishing ideas to chase and some to embrace. Several new products and opportunities exist to improve workflow to save money and create new products (see the circle). All of the options can be overwhelming! So where should you focus…tools, technology, media, or all of the above. My suggestion is to focus on MARKETING.
OK, why am I talking about marketing for bringing innovation to digital publishing? Because that is how you connect to a wider audience. I have worked with few Associations or Publishers that are not already creating great content. Content that exists in multiple media. Content that if more people find out about it more people will join their community. Many are also investing in workflow too. But none of this happens without marketing.
I’m not alone in this thinking. Check out the Scholarly Kitchen (a site focused on Scholarly publishing) recent blog post New Media and New Markets — Making Sense of the Possibilities in Publishing. In Joseph Esposito post he does a great job of talking about innovation in publishing from three categories:
- Subtractive – change that lowers revenue
- Substitutive – takes an existing revenue stream and replicates it with an innovation
- Additive – leads to growth
It’s critical to have a strategic perspective of you digital publishing efforts. The blog post concludes with “The real innovation for digital media is not in technology or in enhancing products. The real innovation is in marketing. The successful publisher is one that can study new technologies and see the inherent marketing opportunities before others do. Management is foresight, first and always.”
For marketing however, using social media, email, websites, cold or warm calling are all required…but can be a slow and expensive process. So what is the key…your content itself. Unleash your content…make it highly discoverable. Highly search able. Highly relevant to the visitors on your website. Highly shareable.
Now, I did not use the word “free” although aspects of your content distribution strategy should include “free” content…free access. But capturing value is required to be sustainable.
Your PubCMS (Publishing Content Manage System) should provide you with ways to effectively manage content make it highly discoverable, searchable and relevant to you visitor. If it can not…you may not be using a PubCMS but a website CMS which simply manages pages on a website….not a publishing solution. You should also be thinking of XML and at least a path to get there.
I’ve said it before and will again…Associations and Publishers are in a race…the winners won’t be the only ones with great content (hopefully most are) but instead the winners will embrace innovation by getting their content read. Are you?