Correction ... and Why The Nook is Promising
CORRECTION: In an earlier post, I mentioned that Zinio is unable to create slideshows as part of their platform. This is incorrect. Zinio offers a variety of software solutions to help publishers create their own slideshows to the specs needed for tablet and desktop.
I'm really excited that we have the Nook out there. Not just because it's yet another device that you can access digital magazines on. Not just because it's priced to be affordable for many people and is in color. But because they are doing a couple of things that will help forward the cause of publishing in whatever medium. Here are a few reasons the Nook gives me great hope:
- The Nook is both a device and an app. That means that Barnes and Noble both created a device that can be purchased, another piece of merchandise for their retail and online stores, and also created a way that you can access magazines on the Nook software through an app available on other devices.
- The Nook comes out of a retail environment. The Nook is owned and operated by Barnes and Noble, our largest chain book and magazine store in America. They like print. They sell print. That means they don't see this as a way to take over for print, but rather to give their customers another way to experience the magazine.
- A corollary to the above: the Nook can cross promote. If you have a magazine that is in print at Barnes and Noble and on the Nook, they are interested in looking for ways to leverage that "double facing" as we call it in the world of newsstand. WOW.
- The Nook is interested in children. Many of their customers are moms and kids, and they are revamping Barnes and Nobles to have more merchandise that is aimed at kids in the stores. What does that mean to us magazine-o-philes? The Nook is aiming squarely at nurturing a love of digital magazines in kids. Readers of the present become our readers of the future.
There are many great devices. As I wrote in an earlier post, the world of digimags is one of a roller coaster where the iPad is going to save us one day and has no chance of keeping us alive the next. Where Zinio's app for magazine sales is outselling Angry Birds in gross revenue one week, and dips the next (it's back up there folks—score one for the magazines!). This one, owned as it is by a retail chain with a great stake in keeping America reading, backs up the iPad and other devices to keep magazine publishing moving forward.
M. Thea Selby is a Principal in Next Steps Marketing, a San Francisco boutique firm that solves audience-building challenges in creative, customized way using practical "call-to-action" marketing techniques where the return is clearly measurable by clicks, online sign-ups, responses to direct mail, orders from partners, or sales at newsstand.
She was the 2010 Women's Leadership Conference Chair, is a co-founder and board member of Exceptional Women in Publishing—a national organization dedicated to supporting women in and through the power of online and print media—and is the former CEO and Publisher of Light Green Media, a digital publishing company.