In late 2005, my business partner and I discussed the prospect of creating and developing a publishing company from the ground up whose focus would be to deliver content exclusively in a digital format rather than the traditional print method. We chose to go this route because we recognized how significant the internet had become and with increased print and fulfillment costs, the writing appeared to be on the wall for print publications, including newspapers and magazines, to either fold financially or broaden their delivery modes to focus more on digital-centric delivery. Five years later, this foresight has proven true.
The publishing world has seen a tremendous change over the course of the past few years as consumers and readers of various content items look to the internet to get their fix on the world around them. From a publisher’s perspective, this utilization of the digital format to access content has literally changed business models and for many publishing companies, it has spelled doom for their bottom-line as digital dollars have gone to digital pennies – in terms of advertising revenue – and print costs have soared.
What has made this model a successful one for many companies is the significant reduction in overhead due to no print or delivery costs, and very limited G&A costs other than hosting, Flash conversion, and other general expenses. In addition, the demographic of enthusiasts throughout the world has helped us as a publication move forward as we have been able to reach readers globally that could not have been reached using a standard print method for publication.
So how can a company provide engaging content online and still be profitable? The key is to utilize viral growth and articulate to advertisers that transitioning into a digital business model for return on investment, and focusing on branding in a Flash delivery mode (i.e. digital Flash flipbooks) can provide substantial and immediate results that mutually benefit the publisher (added revenue), the advertiser (much broader branding/marketing with significantly reduced cost), and the consumer with “instant gratification” of content and accessibility to products within this content that just can’t be achieved from a print publication.
The future of publishing has come and if publishing companies are going to survive, the focus needs to be on digital content and efficiently sourcing the growth while adding value to companies who will propel the revenue stream for online publishers.
Editor & Publisher
JPFreek Adventure Magazine