Many publishers are predicting that 2017 may be the year when the humble digital edition finally comes of age. This can be highlighted by:
– 2016 might be remembered as a year of consolidation within the digital magazine arena with some notable software companies changing their strategy
– The growth of off-platform publishing is decreasing digital advertising revenues despite massively increase their reach.
Monetization of content also remained front of mind for many publishers as they increasingly diversify and find new avenues to market their brand and their content.
This predicament is partially due as the market has become increasingly fragmented over the past few years, and the ways that consumers are accessing content has become even more diverse. Whilst having an always on multi-channel brand access for consumers has brought many user benefits, this has caused enormous challenges to publishers. Many of whom have had to completely rethink their strategy for creating and distributing their content.
Reuse your print content across multiple touch points
Publishers now need to think how to reuse their print content across multiple touch points such as social, mobile web, app, and desktop. This content needs to be created in a fast and efficient manner. Increased efficiencies in the production do not necessarily mean dumbing down creativity, far from it this provides a creative challenge to publishers on how best to distribute and repurpose content whilst creating increased user engagement.
The logical way to undertake this for traditional publishers is to assess how content is being produced, and ensure that there is a straightforward way to repurpose and distribute content across all channels. Publishers need to make sure that their workflows can support all mediums and facilitate this in a streamlined and automated manner.
Use a centralized independent content creation platform
The ideal scenario is to create your content using a centralized independent content creation platform. This would allow publishers to create print, the web, native app and social content from a centralized source ensuring a highly efficient workflow. Media owners who publish newspapers which are updated on an hourly basis tend to use such systems however, this approach has not been widely adopted yet by traditional publishers many of whom still work in siloes.
If publishers are not using a centralised content hub for the management of their media, they key question is how to structure their content for use across multiple platforms and how to do this efficiently.
This issue is compounded by the fact that 80% of digital content is read on smartphones and increasingly consumers are not willing to pay for content, So, publishers need to combat this by ensuring that the content fits to the devices of choice as well as creating engaging content which is specifically created for the devices that the consumers are using. Value added services such as continuous publishing which updates digital editions on a regular basis help to reinforce value and relevancy.
This reinforces the trend that consumers now are looking for bite-sized stackable content that they can read whilst they commute or during a coffee break. This short-form content can stand alone from their digital edition encouraging users to delve deeper into their archives or digital edition.
Finally, publishers now think of themselves as multifaceted brands and multi-channel content creators, and those with the enthusiasm and willingness to embrace new ways of working will fare the best. They also need to be willing and be prepared to act in an agile manner adapting to the ever-changing environment.