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BuddeComm Intelligence Report - Book and Newspaper Publishing in the Digital Era

In essence the book industry has a golden future. More books are read than ever before and new (international) book markets open up every year. Writers have existed – and have been in demand – for 5,000 years and they are not going to die out any time soon. Nor will there be any decrease in demand for more content.

The same can be said of the newspaper industry – the demand for news is not decreasing – rather it is increasing! But the shift to online news has been to the detriment of print newspaper publishing.

New technologies are delivering the same product in a different format and/or different ways, for a fraction of the cost. Traditional cost structures are dictated by analogue business models. Digital technologies don’t have those high costs and they therefore can deliver the product significantly cheaper. As the traditional industry has been slow to adapt to this situation, we have seen others entering the market. These are enormously destructive developments for the traditional industry, and linear solutions are not the answer.

This BuddeComm Intelligence Report explores some of the issues surrounding the transformation of the book and newspaper publishing industries, supported by statistics and examples, where applicable.

Key developments:

The arrival of tablets and e-readers does not mean people read less; it is more likely they will read more, as access to content has become so much easier and cheaper. The education industry has embraced change and is now providing multimedia reading and work material; and a major part of these new developments are now e-based. The nature of the online news business is rather different from the printed business and newspapers are now getting very close to the market that up till now has been held by the TV news media. The newspaper has been the poor cousin of television for the last 50 years in the sphere of breaking news, but it now has a chance to compete with TV head-on. BuddeComm’s observations are that the media in general have not yet fully exploited this opportunity.

1. Synopsis
2. Embracing the new digital era
3. Transforming the book industry
3.1 Digital e-readers/e-books
3.1.1 Price fixing allegations
4. Customer service is king
5. Promoting national culture
6. Industry protectionism will fail
7. More power to the author
8. E-publishers are very different beasts
8.1 Educational books
8.2 Global opportunities
8.3 The book industry has a global future
9. The challenging newspaper publishing sector
10. The future of mass media news
10.1 Sharp decline in mass media usage
10.2 Sensations sell
10.3 The power of the internet
10.4 An interesting venture: Journalism Online
10.5 Paywalls won’t save the traditional newspaper models
10.6 Media companies need to disaggregate and rebuild
10.6.1 Brand key in online media
10.6.2 Rapidly changing online news market
10.6.3 Learn to value brands
10.6.4 PC versus mobile-centric worlds
10.6.5 Multimedia journalism
11. Conclusion: both industries need a digital transformation
12. Related reports
Table 1 – Growth of e-reader sales – 2009 - 2013
Table 2 – Most popular formats for receiving news in the USA – 2010; 2012
Exhibit 1 – Statistical snapshot of e-books
Exhibit 2 - All European books online for the price of 600km of roads

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