25 Tips for Building Your Custom Publishing Business
The custom publishing industry continues to thrive. A new study shows that custom publishing spending grew again in 2004 to an all-time high of $953,748 per company, representing an 18-percent increase over last year, as well as the most significant jump in five years.
The study also showed that more than 54 percent of custom publishing is being outsourced either to a custom publisher, an ad agency, a design firm or a PR firm. The study was conducted by Publications Management in conjunction with the Custom Publishing Council (CPC), the leading professional association for custom publishers in North America, representing 70 of the leading custom publishers.
CPC members shared some advice on the best practices of this growing marketing medium:
Jane Ottenberg, president of The Magazine Group (Washington, D.C.), a provider of print and online custom publishing services to more than 70 organizations nationwide:
1 When launching a custom publishing program, the publisher needs complete buy-in from all key stakeholders, from the CEO to the marketing team and especially the current sales staff. A custom title represents a significant investment of resources and will require sustained support over a long period of time in order to realize its full potential.
Chris McMurry, president/CEO, McMurry (Phoenix, Ariz.), a full-service marketing communications company:
2 There are more than 130,000 custom publications being produced in the United States each year. … So the opportunity for publishers and agencies is truly untapped and massive. But, don't let the attractiveness of the market size lead you into believing that capitalizing is a walk in the park. Succeeding requires the same dedicated and significant resources and organizational commitment that is required to build any type of self-sufficient business.
Ken Massey, director, custom publishing, Carden Jennings Publishing (Charlottesville, Va.), a publisher of scientific, medical and technical publications: