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The Saturday Evening Post is moving back to its hometown in the second quarter of 2013. The iconic magazine started in 1821 with roots dating back to Benjamin Franklin's The Pennsylvania Gazette, which was first published in 1728. At one point The Saturday Evening Post was the most widely circulated weekly magazine in America.
Perhaps best remembered with images from Norman Rockwell dancing through Americans' collective heads. The Post published stories, poetry, and essays by a dazzling number of great Americans:
- Ray Bradbury
- Kurt Vonnegut
- Sinclair Lewis
- Carl Sandburg
- Edgar Allan Poe
- William Faulkner
- F. Scott Fitzgerald
- Dorothy Parker
- Jack London
- the list goes on
Today, the newest version of RSuite CMS has been announced and we can't wait for publishers to experience all the new features and tools. RSuite 4 offers a redesigned, more intuitive user experience with action-oriented contextual menus, search-based content navigation, accordion-style search results, and a user interface (UI) with intentional color design. In fact we've found that the new UI provides greater productivity among editorial and production groups while drastically reducing the learning curve. This means your team will reap the benefits of contet management faster than ever.
“With RSuite 4, we’ve coupled a great user experience with very powerful content management. The unified search and browse experience helps users contend with large volumes of content and assets. This version of RSuite will make content management approachable to a wider range of users---marketing, new product development, and sales. This will further expand the opportunity for our customers to get even more value out of their investment in content management. We continue to focus our efforts to enable publishers to implement a strategy for multi-channel products readily adaptable to future market-driven needs.” ---Christopher Hill, vice president of product management at RSI Content Solutions.
Most publishing companies have one of those folks on staff who is intimate with the content. Someone who knows all the images that were used in a previous edition or which drug monographs couldn't fit into the printed product in time for publication. I used to be one of those people..ask me the ghost words embedded in Tabers' Cyclopedic Dictionary, 18th edition*. Even with a photographic memory, today's proliferation of content makes this skill nearly impossible. I also like to bring up the lottery scenario risk: "what happens if Jim in Production wins the lottery and all that knowledge leaves your organization?"
To effectively manage content, organizations need a handle on what they have. Publishers using a Word document system simply can't be agile in today's environment. Think about a document sitting on some file server, with all its attendant assets—images, charts, chapters and paragraphs—buried within it, and the only way to know what content is in there is for someone in your organization to remember that it’s there.
Without enriching your assets with metadata and storing them in a repository that allows you to search and find content relating to a specific topic—say, tennis elbow or the Higgs boson—you could be duplicating work recreating assets you already own, wasting time searching for those assets, and missing huge revenue opportunities to sell content granularly as a custom bundle or a focused derivative e-product.
At this year’s MarkLogic World conference, Nature Publishing Group (an RSuite CMS customer) presented an explanation of how they support what I would call ‘virtual journals’. There are very specific segments of the scientific world that would not possibly justify the creation of a full-blown journal, but when you start to realize, ‘Hey, we have this very large repository of existing journals with some articles across all of them that appeal to this market, and if we gather these articles up from all these other journals, we’ve got enough content to be of interest to this marketplace.’ Suddenly you have the option to create an online-only product (for example) with very low internal costs that is of specific interest to this niche market that previously was too small to be worth going after. It’s a long-tail concept but without applying metadata consistently and systematically this simply couldn't happen.
Metadata isn't magic and it really isn't all that complicated---you need the proper tools, workflow, and people in your organization. And once you have that set up, the fun begins---new product development, automated distribution to new licensing channels, multi-channel output.
Download our latest white paper and learn how publishers are increasing revenue with strategic content management, including metatadata enrichment. The free white paper includes two case studies from Human Kinetics Publishers and Elsevier Health Science.
*While I no longer work at that publishing company, I won't ever tell!
Educational publisher Triumph Learning knew that digital products would be the ticket to offering great products to its customers as well as being in a position to compete against some of the larger educational publishers in the industry. But to bring digital products to market, it was understood that step one was centralizing content.
Chief business development officer, Robert Methven, shares how in just 1 year Triumph Learning has been able to centralize, inventory, and reuse more than 25 years' of assets to create "Readiness for the Common Core."
We now have a whole new business line that may generate tens of millions of dollars for us based off of being able to leverage our assets that we put into CMS that we now converted and delivered into a new product offering. A year ago we didn’t even have that idea on our product roadmap.
Get started on content management
1. Centralize your content
2. Inventory and understand your assets
3. Develop new digital products quickly
4. Refine digital products based on customer feedback
During Hurricane Sandy this week I doubt I was the only east coast reader concerned about how I would read when the electricity went out. My Kindle and iPad were charged but I knew the iPad wouldn't last long if faced with days of lost power. My trusty Kindle would serve me well but my aggregated news on Flipboard would be missed. Power outage gave me a glimmer of hope that I could catch up on some long-form journalism in its print form (New Yorker) and plan my holiday menu (Bon Appetit). I chuckled thinking how my friend who is adamant about reading print only was not wasting mental energy on this internal discussion. Powered with candles and print, he was prepared for a lovely time.
At a time when major publishers are selecting "digital only" as a solution to plummenting subscriptions and ad sales, the devil is in the details. Electric outages are an obvious problem and real concern if your business delivers exclusively to digital products. There's also the issue of ad revenue in the digital sphere compared with print. Data from PricewaterhouseCoopers illustrate that ad revenue from digital products will double from 2011 to 2016 and print will experience small growth. But the dollar value from print ads eclipses digital:
Now combine competition into this story. Looking at Newsweek's decision to go digital only in 2013 is somewhat shortsighted when you consider all the online competition competing for smaller digital advertising dollars.
Digital only is not the golden ticket....yet. Publishers (media, trade, educational, STM, legal) still need a strong print presence both for the obvious reasons (national electric power grid, customer demographics) and the other obvious reasons (ad revenue, customer demographics!).
We've been conducting a year-long survey with publishers and media organizations to assess digital revenue metrics along with technology adoption decisions. So far, the majority of our respondents indicate that digital revenue is exceeding print revenue.
Does this mean these publishers are creating more digital products than print products? That answer is still to be determined. We also ask publishers to indicate all the outputs expected to be a focus in the future. At the moment both print and ebooks are tied with 88.9% of respondents indicating that print and digital books are important. Web products have a slight increase at 91.1%.
Our big takeaway from the preliminary results to the 2012 publishers' survey do indicate something we've maintained for years. No matter your revenue streams from published products, a single-source multi-channel publishing process is key to satisfying customers along with the bottom line.
As you're cleaning up from the hurricane and recharging your electronic devices think about how your organization is setting itself up and share your input. We'll reveal all the results to this survey in an upcoming webinar in December.
Let us know the devilish details that your organization faces.
Webinar: Wednesday, October 24, 2012
1:00 PM - 2:00 PM EDT
The premise of all publishing organizations is to provide quality content in a format that customers desire. Ask any copy editor about house style and you can anticipate a lengthy and thoughtful response. Authors too expect nothing but perfection when transforming intellectual property into a print or digital product. So how do successful publishing organizations blend automation into workflows without sacrificing quality? In this webinar, we’ll reveal some interesting truths around quality control and provide tips that you can bring back to your office.
Join panelists Mike Edson and John Corkery from the DETI Group.
Since the story broke early this morning, newsfeeds, blogs, and web sites are buzzing with the news that Newsweek will go digital only on December 31, 2012.
Tina Brown, editor in chief, explained "We are transitioning Newsweek, not saying goodbye to it," Brown said. "We remain committed to Newsweek and to the journalism that it represents. This decision is not about the quality of the brand or the journalism -- that is as powerful as ever. It is about the challenging economics of print publishing and distribution."
Brown cites a Pew Research Center report that found 39% of Americans get news from an online source. And indeed that percentage will increase in the coming years. Transitioning the organization now to digital only will help secure the foundation Newsweek laid in 1933 when the publication began.
Topics: digital publishing
RSI Content Solutions and Data Conversion Laboratory are collecting input on the state of technology adoption and digital revenue metrics from publishing and media organizations. We want to understand and analyze how publishers are approaching the digital landscape to benefit customers and recognize increased revenue from multi-channel publishing. We've created a quick survey to gather input and will share the results of this survey at our November webinar. Additionally, everyone who takes the survey is entered in a drawing for a $100 American Express gift card. The winner of the drawing will be announced here on this blog.
Here's what you need to do to take part:
Last Thursday, publishing professionals met in Philadelphia for the 6th annual RSuite CMS User Conference. Brian Howard from Book Business highlighted a number of the key takeaways, including the following:
In Lisa Bos’ talk on metadata, she used the example of Oxford University Press, whose Oxford Index provides customers tools to drill deep for the content they’re seeking. She noted that OUP captures “twenties of items of metadata for each product,” clarifying that by product she didn’t mean books, but chapters of books. The richer your metadata, the more opportunities there are for your customers to find your products.
On the issue of what publishers’ products are called in the digital age, Evan Owens of the American Institute of Physics (AIP) said: “We’re an ‘article’ publisher; ‘issues’ are an artifact of the past. It’s article first.” Discussing the benefits of implementing a strategic CMS, AIP’s Owens noted that implementing RSuite was “an opportunity to step back, clear the deck and think about what we want to achieve.” He noted that early adopters — AIP was online early — can get in a rut, and that like lots of early Internet adopters, “everything was in a file system and there wasn’t an infrastructure to manage things.” As with publishers using file systems, there was “no version control; anyone in the building could change a file at any time, and I couldn’t do anything about it.” Implementing a CMS allowed AIP to protect its most valuable asset.
The complete review is available here.