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.
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.