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November 30, 2016

The attention economy in publishing

What is attention economy?

Attention economy is dedicated to the way we deal, filter and engage or not with a piece of information. Attention is seen as a “scarce commodity” and as an intangible that all industries fight for. When we get presented with various items, the mechanics of our it decides whether to act or to restrain from further engagement.

Being tiny spectacles in the bulk of information we get bombarded with, our time becomes vulnerable. The publishing industry is vastly dependent on the reader’s consideration. The basic calculation is that an hour spent on one book is an hour not spent on another. Attracting readers to devote time to your content equals a war of engagement with the other alternatives in the publishing sector. Thus, publishers have been “pioneers” in facing the metric swap: clicks do not mean attention.

Attention is at stake

How attentive can we be? How much time do we have? Both time and attention are not infinite. Capturing reader’s interest is a good goal that many can achieve with smart tactics. Keeping it, though, is not a piece of cake. Attention “stays” where quality thrives. Clicks and pageviews are just superficial data when it comes to publishing. However, if your content piques the reader’s intrigue, this is an excellent beginning. Then only time (and data) can tell whether you have really earned the reader’s mind in a more persistent way. This is the point when attention becomes a metric of success. When it comes to monetization, traffic becomes irrelevant. Audience is King.

The right data can give another prism to publishers. Namely, not measuring the activity of their index fingers but the extent to which publishers have reached reader’s minds.

Clicking is not the end of the journey. It is the first step of getting somebody to read and then to keep them reading on. This is where data steps in: to help publishers create content readers would want to get back to.

Word of advice: Create, publish and present content that is worth reader’s time.

Image source: http://www.wadeharman.com

November 21, 2016

What is data-driven publishing?

The publishing industry is one of the most agile spheres worldwide. It has been evolving actively from the introduction of the printing press to the emergence of ebooks. There had always been one big factor that had caused the publishing evolution: the readers. The way they select, purchase and interact with books, their preferences and habits. However, some bits of the decision-making process has long stayed unchanged: the choice of what to be published, and what not. A fun fact about “Harry Potter”: the book  has been put down 12 times before being published. Such decisions had been primarily taken based on the editor’s gut feeling. But how stable is that?Welcome to the data-driven predictions!

Data has literally overflown every industry: capturing and analysing it has been seen as a much more reliable way to understand readers’ wishes. Data in publishing empowers decision-makers to grasp the preferences of the audience and foresee potential future trends much better.

What do readers want?

Initially information has been gathered via focus groups and surveys. However, this “limited” approach could not get the desirable results at scale. Digital reading has changed the data aggregation pattern. The connected devices makes it possible for publishers to track readers’ behaviour on their daily commute, or during sleepless nights. It is now possible for publishers to understand whether somebody reads poetry for an hour every day! All this very specific information coming straight from the horse’s mouth can be analyzed!

Data as a Magic Ball

Data is advantageous to everyone involved in the publishing process. Authors get the opportunity to test their plots through forums and glean better understanding of the audiences’ interests. Readers enjoy a two-way communication with authors. They can give feedback, express their preferences and realise the power of their opinion. And of course publishers – they get real information that help them predict the next bestseller and the type of books that are currently the hype. They get to know the end-users through behavioural data.

Less risk, more power.

October 21, 2016

Smartphone reading: hype or necessity?

smartphone reading on BeetleReader epub reader

Smartphones have become multi-purpose devices. And although ebook reading will “never” be what they will primarily be used for, phones have shifted the reading pattern.  Smartphone reading has experienced an increase in the number, noticed in a Nielsen survey. About 54% of e-book buyers confirmed they are using their phones for reading some of the time. This trend is up: from 24% in 2012, according to Nielsen.

Further to that, people who read mainly on phones accounted for 14% in the beginning of 2015, in comparison with 9% in 2012. What is interesting to analyse here is the drop of those reading mainly on e-readers: from 50% to 32%. Tablet reading has also declined from 44% to 41%.

So smartphones already serve as this spontaneous device that allows for extending book reading in unexpected time and places. Smartphone reading has its special place in the reader’s habits. Restricting it or delivering bad mobile experience can be rather disappointing. Yes, the screen is just too small for reading. Although phones are not deemed to be “serious” e-reading tools, we can still ensure the user gets the best experience. How?

Smartphone reading and ePubs

Of course, ePub is the answer! It offers much better reading experience on mobile than PDF does.

Versatility is the main benefit of ePub files. Always go for the EPUB version, because it is compatible with all devices. Smartphone reading has also become popular because it offers you instant reading. No Nooks and Kindles, just having your smallest device at hand is enough! Providing your readers with BeetleReader grants them an essential benefit: to access their ebook library everywhere, on any device. As an advanced ePub reader, BeetleReader also offers text highlighting, note taking and bookmarking.

One of the interesting prophecies in the ebook world states: “The future of digital reading is on the phone,” said Judith Curr, publisher of the Simon & Schuster imprint Atria Books. “It’s going to be on the phone and it’s going to be on paper.”

So time to explore the features of the BeetleReaderThe only ePub reader that will deliver everything to you,  everywhere and on every device!

Image source: http://thoughtcatalog.com

September 19, 2016

Favourite quotes from children’s books

epub viewer beetlereader learn from children's quotes

This week we have chosen 10 quotes from children’s books to learn from. The BeetleReader wishes you a pleasant journey in the world of wisdom, motivation and inspiration!

“The moment you doubt whether you can fly, you cease for ever to be able to do it.”

– JM Barrie, Peter Pan

“The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.”

– Dr Seuss, I Can Read With My Eyes Shut!

“A person who has good thoughts cannot ever be ugly… if you have good thoughts they will shine out of your face like sunbeams and you will always look lovely.”

– Roald Dahl, The Twits

“‘What day is it?’, asked Winnie the Pooh.

‘It’s today,’ squeaked Piglet.

‘My favorite day,’ said Pooh.”

— A. A. Milne, The Adventures of Winnie the Pooh

“Watch with glittering eyes the whole world around you, because the greatest secrets are always hidden in the most unlikely places. Those who don’t believe in magic will never find it.”

– Roald Dahl, The Minpins

“Here is my secret. It is very simple: It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.”

– Antoine de Saint-Exupery, The Little Prince

“You have plenty of courage, I am sure,” answered Oz. “All you need is confidence in yourself. There is no living thing that is not afraid when it faces danger. The true courage is in facing danger when you are afraid, and that kind of courage you have in plenty.””

– L. Frank Baum, The Wizard of Oz

“In every job that must be done, there is an element of fun. You find the fun and ‘snap’, the job’s a game.”

-– P.L. Travers, Mary Poppins

“I am not afraid of storms, for I am learning how to sail my ship.”

– L.M. Alcott, Little Women

“No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted.”

– Aesop, The Lion & The Mouse

September 2, 2016

What are the differences between PDF and EPUB?

BeetleReader epub viewer differences with pdf

Many users are asking how exactly PDF differs from EPUB. They cannot really grasp the initial excitement about latter. This article aims to shed some light over the main differences and similarities between the two formats.

In previous posts, we have already explained what EPUB is and what its main benefits are. However, its most important feature is that has become a standard open format which has lead to its quick adoption by the publishing industry.

PDF is Adobe’s format and stands for portable document format. It is one of the oldest and most popular eBook formats. Perhaps one of the most valued characteristics of PDF is that it is securely locked against editing – very safe for digitally signing documents.

Below are the main differences between the two formats.

  • Accessibility: EPUBs have become more accessible especially for impaired readers, as they function better when it comes to screen reading software.
  • Readability: PDF files offer “a mirror”of the original format. It is just perfect for iPad, PC or Mac. However, when it comes to reading on mobile devices, EPUB files read much better. This comes from the next differentiation point.
  • Reflowable text: EPUB’s text is reflowable (also called ‘responsive design’). This means that the content will reflow depending on the viewing window. It just fits to the dimensions of the screen!
  • Pagination: EPUB offers table of contents navigation or using embedded links in terms of page navigation. Some EPUB reader do not offer page number display or search. BeetleReader has worked specifically on implementing page jump to make it more convenient for users.
  • Linking: As EPUB is an HTML-based format, it may contain links that take the user out to a certain web page.
  • Zoom in/out: Unlike PDF, EPUB does not have zoom in/out function, as the text resizes automatically.
  • Layout: PDF supports static images, tables and other similar elements that retain the original layout of the ebook. However, EPUB has a spectacular feature-support that optimizes the text to display on all devices and browsers.

 

August 15, 2016

Why is ePub beneficial to publishers?

epub beneficial to publishers

While many eReaders are only claiming to encourage simplicity, flexibility and interactivity, ePub is truly a format dedicated to bringing these features altogether both to the publishers and to the end users.

ePub is the child of rethinking the digital publishing landscape and it has addressed the changing needs in the sector. But how? Well, ePub presents the solution for one of the biggest challenges for the publishing industry – accessibility. Readers have been confronted with certain limitations – “this format goes with this device, that book can only be read on this eReader” and so on and so forth. The ePub3 standard empowers both publishers and readers to enjoy a constraint-free accessibility. Publishers can now create fully supported audio, text, images and video in a mainstream digital format.

ePub has turned out to be a cornerstone of digital teaching & learning for many big publishers. The way in which documentation is being delivered has been altered to a more interactive one, which allows for a richer reading experience. By employing ePub, publishers can now offer to readers advanced accessibility, much facilitated use on mobile devices, interactivity, independence of eReaders and an authentic, engaging reading experience. Furthermore, ePub presents itself in a single-file format (thanks, IDPF). It is the superhero of the publishing domain that promotes cross-platform digital content that is highly adaptable.

Due to the use of Open Web Platform, ePub is able to offer a file format that reflows to take the size of the device screen, supports dynamic content, annotation, bookmarking and other very useful, especially to education and business, features.

Namely for this reason, the education sector has marked the fastest and perhaps the widest adoption of ePub. For instance, Pearson have placed ePub in the spotlight for their digital learning solutions, as the ePub format responds to the structural and semantic demands educational publishing has.

ePub simply covers everything educators need:

  • Guarantees accessibility to students
  • Offers easy content creation
  • Includes various rich media types (audio, video, images)
  • Adds semantics for education-specific components
  • Includes interactive questions and quizzes
  • Encourages flexibility and freedom
  • Has offline access functionality
  • Saves lots of time

We hope this articles has helped you glean some important information.

Please take a look at Beetle Readers’ features to gauge whether and how you can benefit from its wonderful tools.

August 12, 2016

Meet ePub

EPUB_logo.svg

What is ePub?

Sorry for bursting the bubble, but ePub does not stand for an electronic pub!

The term is an abbreviation for electronic publication. It is a free e-book file format that can be read on all devices (computers, tablets, smartphones and e-readers). Since its standardization by the International Digital Publishing Forum, ePub has become vastly popular and some major publishers now prefer it to PDF.

What are the benefits of ePub?

ePub offers great compatibility, not only because it is not tied to any specific device, but also because it can be used with a variety of software. This is due to ePub using two languages – XML and XHTML.

ePub group of files come into a single package – easy to store and organize. Another great advantage of ePub is that it is open format. That means that it could be used by everyone, without any risks and additional costs. Being an open standard tool, guaranteed ePub popularity, as it has become very useful both for individual authors and for publishers.

Apart from its open nature, ePub is very independent. Yes, that is right, no big companies that are gobbling up vast amount of money thanks to the success of the format. ePub is not limited to any specific company, product or brand. It is just there to offer an authentic reading experience for the readers and make publishers’ lives simpler. ePub offers one, uniform standard that can be used by all. You might ask why this is worth mentioning… Remember the e-reader craze? Almost every company had decided to create their own eBook readers and this has led to a number of limitations, rather than actually encouraging reading/publishing.

ePub has introduced a standard for digital publications by removing all obstacles and without creating any of the mayhem ebook readers provoked.

Another massive benefit of ePub is its reflowable text. This means the text can reflow to any screen and resize its contents base. No need to switch devices or zoom in and out when using a small screen.

BeetleReader has chosen to use ePub to offer maximum usability, freedom and flexibility to publishers, while also ensuring an immersive experience for readers.