From the Editor: Your Outlook for 2012
Depending on whom you talk to in the industry, this is either a period of great opportunity, as publishers explore new frontiers, or it is a time of great struggle, as publishers strive to offset shifts in marketing spend (declines in print especially), and develop new products and revenue streams. For some, it's both. Regardless, few would argue that we are facing major changes brought about by new technologies, and content-delivery methods and formats.
It can help to know what other publishers see as their greatest challenges and growth areas, as well as what they are investing in. This is exactly what we examined in our annual Publishing Executive reader survey. (Thank you so much to the hundreds of you who participated!) Here's what you said:
The top 10 challenges publishing executives are facing:
1. Transitioning from print-centric to multimedia publishing and merging/integrating multiple platforms; keeping abreast of technologies and strategies for doing so.
2. Ad sales/revenue growth, shifts in marketing spend, new revenue sources.
3. Creating and/or monetizing digital publications.
4. Increasing content and expanding content formats (re: workflow) and sales without budget support/resources.
5. Audience development: Subscriber/reader/member acquisition and retention.
6. Social media strategies, monetization and ROI analysis.
7. Mobile strategies and creation of successful apps.
8. Web revenue growth.
9. Strategies for print to adapt and thrive.
10. Escalating costs.
The top 11 growth areas publishers are seeing:
1. Web (69% of respondents)
2. E-newsletters (47%)
3. Print (33%)
4. Custom Publishing (27%)
5. Webinars/virtual events (27%)
6. In-person events (24%)
7. Paid-content products—digital (21%)
8. Video (17%)
9. Paid-content products—print (12%)
10. Reprints/e-prints/content licensing (10%)
11. List sales (7%)
The top 11 publishing technologies/solutions for which publishers will be shopping in 2012: