Native Ads are Well Suited to the Digital Age
Time Inc. has announced its intention to double down on its native advertising. In a July 2016 announcement, the media company declared its intentions to restructure its editorial and advertising system, including an uptick in the use of native advertising. Native advertising is a type of disguised advertising, in which paid promotional messages mimic the style of the publication where they are placed.
The CEO of Time Inc., Joe Ripp, explained that native branding solutions have provided a large revenue stream for the company. Time has been producing native advertising since 2014 in an effort to improve profits. Print magazines have been suffering circulation and profit loss for many years, as readers turn to online content, and advertisers distribute the greatest share of their budget to online ads.
Time Inc. is not alone. Major newspapers such as the New York Times, the Boston Globe, and The Washington Post have been using native advertising as well.
The Changing Publishing Business Has Lost Masses of Jobs
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics recently published a snapshot of publishing industry jobs. According to the BLS’s graph, the industry has taken a beating over the past twenty-five years. The sectors hit the hardest were books, newspapers, and periodicals.
Book publishing, an industry that saw numerous consolidations in recent years, lost a considerable amount of jobs. In 1990, there were 85,900 jobs in book publishing. By 2016, only 61,500 jobs remained. Periodical publishing jobs also suffered because of poor sales. The industry boasted 146,800 jobs in 1990, but by 2016, that number had dipped to 93,600.
Comics Are Immune to Publishing’s Sales Dip
Comics are proving impervious to the sales problems endemic to the publishing business. While publishing overall showed slipping sales revenue from 2014 to 2015, the comics’ periodical, book format comics, and graphic novel market has been going strong in the United States. According to a joint report by Comichron and trade news site ICv2, the 2015 market was worth more than a billion dollars. That represents a 10 percent increase in sales since 2014.
Graphic novels jumped the most in sales revenue, showing 23 percent year-over-year growth. Sales of print comics also took a leap, growing by 13 percent. Only digital comics saw a drop in sales, showing a 10 percent decline in sales from 2014 to 2015.
Even though Americans appear to be reading fewer novels and works of non-fiction, they are clearly grabbing hold of the comics’ trend. Several aspects of the comics’ experience are attracting them.
Poor Book Sales Have Led Publishers to Reinvent the Book
The Association of American Publishers (AAP) has released its 2015 final sales estimates, disappointing book publishers. Total industry sales dropped by .6 percent between 2014 and 2015, showing another year-over-year drop. Even though unit sales rose, overall profits have dropped.
Ebooks showed sharply declining revenue, down to $2.84 billion in 2015 compared with $3.20 billion in 2014. Overall, print books’ revenue rose, with paperbacks forming the basis of that revenue. Downloadable audiobooks continued their stratospheric climb, with sales that rose by more than 37 percent since 2014.
The AAP derives its figures by combining sales figures of more than one thousand reporting publishing companies. AAP claims that its estimates reflect sales from other publishers as well. Indie book publishers might paint a different picture of the industry, but these figures denote the climate for major publishers’ book sales.
Automatically Produced Videos are a Boon to News Publishers
The unceasing popularity of YouTube has proven consumers’ appreciation for videos of all sorts. Videos are popular in virtually all arenas, from business to education to religion. News publishers have found a way to feed their clients’ endless hunger for more videos: automated video services.
Automated video services are backed by computer algorithms that peruse news stories for information and then produce matching images and words. The two main companies producing this type of video, Wochit and Wibbitz, are both based in Tel Aviv and New York City. Major news publishers such as Gannett and Time Inc. have availed themselves of these time-saving and money-saving services.
A New Book Guides Writers to Literary Success
Authors usually write books that express their inner thoughts and then hope that readers will appreciate their writing. Now, instead of writing from their hearts, authors can write for the bestseller list. Two authors claim to have figured out how to predict which books will land on the bestseller list.
Jodie Archer and Matthew L. Jockers, authors of the soon-to-be-published book The Bestseller Code: Anatomy of The Blockbuster Novel, say they have created a groundbreaking algorithm that has identified the components that grant a book bestseller status. The authors contend that they can predict with 97 percent certainty if a fiction title will hit number one on the New York Times bestseller list, or if it will only hit numbers two through fifteen on the list.