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Joseph Esposito: Stage Five Publishing
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Joseph Esposito: Stage Five Publishing


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  • 1. Stage Five Book Publishing AAUP Presentation Joseph J. Esposito CEO GiantChair June 18, 2010
  • 2. Hope is the thing with feathers
    • --Emily Dickinson
  • 3. Topics
    • What is sustainability?
    • The place of innovation
    • Tracking four key properties
    • The 5-stage typology
    • Red herrings
  • 4. What is Sustainability, Anyway?
      • Is the current situation worth sustaining?
      • Sustainability and the status quo
      • Where is scholarly publishing going?
      • Create a picture of the future, and paint yourself in
  • 5. The Place of Innovation
    • Looks to the future
    • Aligns a publisher with trends in the industry
    • Permits a publisher to get in on the ground floor
    • The “inevitability factor”
  • 6. Tracking 4 Key Properties
    • Venue (where are books sold?)
    • Medium (is the book in print or digital?)
    • Sales channels (is the book sold through middlemen or directly to consumers?)
    • Nature of offering (is the book sold by itself or as part of a broader marketing program?)
  • 7. Stage 1 Book Publishing
      • The traditional model
      • Sold in bricks-and-mortar bookshops and to libraries
      • Print books
      • Sold through various resellers
      • Each book is a discrete entity
      • For virtually all publishers, whether scholarly or commercial, this is still the primary way books are published and sold
  • 8. Stage 1 Properties
  • 9. Stage 2
      • Advent of online bookselling (Amazon et al)
      • Most of the traditional model remains:  discrete products in print sold through resellers
      • Perhaps 25% or more of the scholarly book business today
      • Most publishers view online stores as they do physical stores
      • Important aspect of online bookselling is the new priority given to metadata to aid in the discovery of books
  • 10. Stage 2 Properties
  • 11. Stage 3
      • Advent--or the tipping point--of the ebook
      • Sold online; no meaningful bricks-and-mortar role
      • Still sold through intermediaries
      • Highly disruptive
      • Role of online discovery soars, increasing pressure on high-quality metadata and search-engine optimization
      • This is where the industry is now, but note that Stages 1 and 2 are still active and comprise the bulk of revenue
  • 12. Stage 3 Properties
  • 13. Stage 4
      • Emergence of direct marketing
      • Linked to SEO
      • Higher margins, better control of marketing
      • Dispenses with print, bricks and mortar, and resellers
      •   Collection of data about end-users
  • 14. Stage 4 Properties
  • 15. Stage 5
      • Just now on the horizon
      • Selling books by subscription
      • Reduces the cost of acquiring customers
      • Likely to take many different forms
      • The leaders for this stage have not yet emerged
  • 16. Some Reflections on Stage 5
      • The music business is moving toward subscriptions
      • Multi-publisher aggregations are a short-term tactic
      • Likely to result in restructuring of presses
  • 17. Stages and Properties (summary)
  • 18. And that has made all the difference --Robert Frost