The trend for digital editions is up and up for publishers. The new medium is really beginning to take more and more attention away from the hard copy variants.
Whilst at the same time adage.com is also there to point out that the total distribution of digital versions of magazines in early 2012 still comes in at only 1% of total circulation for many publishers.
So are there areas in which Magazine’s brands can look towards to take advantage and gain traction for their digital editions? The most important thing to remember is that designing for digital publishing is not the same as for hard copy and if the approach is the same the results will be disappointing.
Some ideas which will certainly come to the fore as the medium develops are:
Contextual publications which will allow the publisher to edit the content depending on where the reader is located geographically so the time the reader is reading the publication at and possibly even the level of a reader’s bank account!
There is a possibility that in the future with the integration of NFC technology in cell phones coming to fruition that this shall soon also reach the tablet. An entire publication could be a malleable piece of content which the publishers and advertisers alike get to work with after it has been sold.
Imagine more adverts for CostCo as we near pay day or perhaps more adverts for beachwear when you’ve been to the beach for the first time this summer?
Another area which it would appear as a potential for positive growth (perhaps to be realised sooner as the technology has been around for ages) includes the sale of Back Issues of a publication. The back issue of a publication in digital format makes a whole lot of sense over out-dated torn magazines in hard copy.
Also the advantage of a back issue is that the owner may get to access content which is otherwise very much out of reach on account of price. Consider a #1 Comic for example – Where prices can reach over a million dollars for a first edition.
Image from the nice folks here.