Reboot Books > “How To Fix What Is Broken”. On increasing efficiency, ‘going direct’ and better rights trading
May 2, 2021 by ruediger

In case you have missed the recent online debate at ReBoot Books on April 21st, find here below some key talking points from the discussions – and a 16 minute video excerpt from the panel “In search of the final consumer“.

As a registered member of ReBoot, you can even view the full three sessions in the ReBoot Box!

The day-to-day challenges under pandemic market conditions for a publishing company are adding up to a long list, said Planeta’s CEO JesĂșs Badenes in his opening statement at the ReBoot online debate on April 21, 2021.

The business has become more complex, with smaller average print runs and other titles gaining in popularity as book buyers’ references changed. For the head of the largest publishing group in the Spanish language, the key to an efficient management response can be boiled down to a four-letter word: Data.

Having the right data at your finger tips allows to better manage the inventory, finding the right balance between increasing digital products, and using flexible print-on-demand solutions for physical books, which helps to lower returns and make ecommerce more customer friendly.

This allowed Gerd Robertz, CEO of German BOD – a provider of both PoD and of author & self-publishing solutions, and a sponsor of ReBoot – to follow up seemlessly. These same solutions are available not just to big corporations – Planeta’s turnover tops that of New York based Simon & Schuster, or French Editis group. Even small independent publishers or a self-published author can provide the same convenience in fast delivery, and harvest resulting data insights, to develop a strong and targetd marketing.

Publishers and retailers must “build a customer journey“, added Jason Spanos, Chief Revenue Officer at KNK, an internationally leading software provider to the book business, and a sponsor of ReBoot. During the pandemic, KNK particularly focused, with a newly established, dedicated team, on monitoring how quickly customer engagement and habits were changing. “We simulated meetings at libraries, or in coffeeshops, or now in their online social exchanges” for learning to quickly adapt to new patterns of engagement.

Gaining data, organizing them within one company, or even sharing data more openly that what is common today triggered the subsequent lively debate between both speakers and experienced book professionals in the audience.

Today, said technologist Matt Turner, people interact digitally in order to then buy physical books – or opt for entertainment media instead of a book, like series or games in streaming TV.

Thus publishers must learn to better understand their own products and, as Anne Bergmann of the Federation of European Publishers added, explore the co-existence between sales and streaming services for e-books and digital audiobooks, in order to avoid mistakes that had done great harm to the music and the audiovisual services a decade ago.

Companies need to integrate workflows and data flows within their organization, and not just look at data gained through distributors and retailers, argued Brian O’Leary of the New York based industry think tank BISG.

How all this can be brought to fruition in the day-to-day company life was richly illustrated by Julie MacKay from the American subscription platform Scribd, Peta Nightingale from the British author services platform Bookouture, which had been acquired by Hachette, as well as Rafaela Pechansky of the Brazilian reading community TAG.

How well established in innovative forms to connect and network are seen in the trade of rights and licenses will be summarized in a separate blog post in a few days.

You can’t wait to access the full debates in video recordings – and join us also at the next live event on June 15, 2021, then you should become a full member of ReBoot. Registration is simple at https://rebootbooks.org/

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