Enhanced business for enhanced e-Books
Enhanced e-books will change the book publishing industry beyond recognition. There was a time when a book was just about reading. Then along came the web and story characters were given the opportunity to take their fans into their world of interactive micro-sites, games, animations and learning experiences. Now the books themselves are becoming enhanced with video, games, audio and interactive events.
Books have also expanded their reach to become extraordinary experiences on technology platforms such as the iPad. Some observers estimate that in three years’ time e-books will represent 25% of all book sales. Some believe that enhanced books will be the standard for front line titles in another 2 – 3 years.
The internet is, however, a disruptive technology. It has a tendency to completely redefine the competitive landscape. The traditional models simply don’t work as well. To replicate of the virtues of a printed book into an e-book and then support it with a brochure type website is missing the real opportunities offered by the web.
Some of the key ingredients for an online success story are as follows:
- A book’s stories and characters can offer publishers multiple revenue streams that can be exploited. The book or e-book is just one of these revenue streams.
- Supporting a book with a business website, rather than a brochure site, ensures the technology is in place to actively maximise conversion rates.
- If you use the stories and characters to build an active community you have the unique opportunity to engage with the book’s fans. This is the only way to really get to know the book’s fans, build their loyalty, reward them and ensure they stick around to become repeat customers.
- A book won’t sell unless people know about it and the best way to spread the message is through word-of-mouth. Stories and characters have a unique opportunity to create effective conversations. The publisher needs to instigate content seeding and actively promote such conversations through blogs, social media sites, portals, online marketing and much more.
- There is an art to capturing and retaining attention. The three critical ingredients are original content, regularly updated content and quality content. There are a host of possibilities from games and animations to wikis and user generated content tools.
Placing a high quality, enhanced e-book within its own business website context places it on a completely different level to a standard book in a brochure site context. The business site provides irresistible stickiness, generates effective conversations, builds communities, maximises conversion rates from visitors to consumers and ensures a healthy return on investment from multiple revenue streams.
By Philippe Ingels
Presentation: A visual explanation of business websites
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