Archive for April, 2011

New paper: Digital Publishing – A Brave New (Metrics-driven) World

As I’ve talked with publishers recently, one thing that really distinguishes digital publishing frequently comes to the surface: the ability to have insight into how content is performing via analytics. In previous decades, publishers relied on point-of-sale data and readership surveys to gain a picture of how readers think they are using the content (is the average length of time readers spend with an article 2 or 3 or maybe even 4 minutes – more, less?). In contrast, with analytics in a digital publication, publishers have insight into the exact performance of content and advertising. For example, with analytics publishers can measure how editorial and advertising content is performing; how readers purchase, download and navigate through a digital edition; what interactivity types perform the best (video, audio, animation…); and how often readers come back to an issue.

The question that remains, however, is how publishers will be able to use analytics to further optimize and fine-tune content for greater profitability.  We’ve put together a short paper that outlines some of the possibilities.  In Digital Publishing: A Brave New (Metrics-driven) World (PDF 348kb), we highlight several scenarios in which publishers will be able to use analytics to guide decision-making.

For example, using analytics, publishers can identify bottlenecks in the conversion process using funnel analysis. Publishers seeking to understand the purchase conversion process can examine a funnel that starts with app installs, progresses through free downloads of sample content and ends with in-app purchases of content. Publishers can then fine-tune the content and experience they are providing in order to maximize user conversion.

Moreover, publishers can use navigation path analysis to determine how users interact with the different parts of a publication.  In one instance, using this analysis, a publisher discovered that some of the most valuable advertising inventory in a digital publication are those pages immediately surrounding the cover story.  As a different example of fine-tuning content for profitability, publishers in the future could also perform A/B tests to determine which cover treatment pulls more readers in – and consequently generates more revenue. On the advertising side, analytics can also provide a deeper level of insight into audiences in order to create more customized, relevant experiences for individuals or target groups.

In the paper, we suggest four guiding principles based on our experience so far with helping publishers implement analytics in their apps, including:

  1. Integrate, don’t separate your analytics from editorial and sales operations
  2. Realign your metrics for the tablet experience
  3. Embed analytics into existing workflows
  4. Be smart about rich media

With Digital Publishing Suite, customers have access to analytics technology powered by Omniture technology.  Through this tight integration, publishers can gain a deeper insight into editorial and advertising performance.  Digital Publishing Suite Professional Edition customers will have access to a base set of dashboards, and Enterprise Edition customers can access both the base set of dashboards, or extended, drill-down metrics through SiteCatalyst (subscription to SiteCatalyst sold separately).

For more info

 

 

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12:00 PM Permalink

Viewer Builder Service updated with support for iOS & direct subscription models

Updated: April 22, 2011 to correctly state that all content – regardless of entitlement or subscription mechanism – is delivered by Distribution Service of Digital Publishing Suite (Adobe servers).

Late last week, we released another update to the Viewer Builder Service, which allows publishers to create a custom-branded instance of Content Viewer that renders interactive publishing content in the .folio format.  Viewer Builder also integrates all appropriate certificate signings so publishers can submit digital publications to the Apple App Store (and start monetizing content)!  The new options in Viewer Builder give publishers a huge leap forward in monetizing publications through subscription models – key to sustaining recurring revenue streams for media publishers.

In this latest update, the Viewer Builder Service allows publishers to create branded apps that support subscription and direct entitlement payment models.  In total, Viewer Builder enables publishers to choose from five different options in creating a publisher-branded viewer.

  • Single-folio – allows readers to view a built-in single .folio file, which is combined with the viewer into one application and hosted via the app store.
  • Multi-folio (Adobe hosted) – allows readers to browse a content library and download .folio files that are hosted on Adobe servers through the Distribution Service of Digital Publishing Suite.
  • Entitlement – allows Enterprise Edition publishers to create a multi-folio viewer and deliver files that are hosted on Adobe servers through the Distribution Service of Digital Publishing Suite.  Readers can pay for the content through a publisher’s own subscription payment system.  This allows publishers to bundle digital publications with a print subscription, for example, because Content Viewer authenticates a reader against a publisher’s own subscription payment server to provision access to the digital publication.
  • Entitlement with iOS Subscription – allows Enterprise Edition publishers to create a multi-folio viewer and deliver files that are hosted on Adobe servers through the Distribution Service of Digital Publishing Suite.  Readers can pay for the content either through Apple subscriptions or through a publisher’s own subscription payment system.
  • iOS Subscription – allows publishers to create a multi-folio viewer that downloads content from the Distribution Service of Digital Publishing Suite (Adobe servers).  Readers can pay for the content through the Apple subscription service.

I’ve created a chart below that outlines the range of flexible options Viewer Builder provides.

Content Payment
Access only a single piece of content Access a library of content Initial app purchase via Apple In-app purchase via Apple Subscription purchase via publisher Subscription purchase via Apple
Single-folio X X
Multi-folio X X
Entitlement X X
Entitlement with iOS Subscription X X X
iOS Subscription X X

In addition, the latest update to Viewer Builder includes the following features:

  • PDF zoom support – If you create a .folio file with the Drop 10 toolset or later, you can enable PDF zooming. This option allows users to pinch and zoom non-interactive pages.
  • Folio download improvements – With the Drop 11 Content Viewer the download speed on iPad has doubled.  In addition, your readers can read one .folio file while downloading another.

Access the latest update to Viewer Builder from the Digital Publishing Suite prerelease program.

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5:22 PM Permalink

Free: May 2011 issue of WIRED, courtesy of Adobe

In celebration of WIRED magazine’s first anniversary as a digital magazine on the iPad, Adobe has sponsored the May 2011 issue of the magazine.  Beginning today and continuing for the next 30 days, readers can download the WIRED app from the App Store and access the May 2011 issue at no cost, thanks to Adobe’s sponsorship.  Published using Digital Publishing Suite, the magazine includes video, animated infographics, and other interactive elements that engage and excite readers and that have become standard in digital publications.

In this issue, WIRED extends reader engagement even further, including:

  • Social sharing that allow readers to post articles via Twitter, Facebook or share via email
  • Functionality that allows readers to tap on a “Buy Now” button in the product review section to instantly purchase reviewed products

The issue also features comedian Andy Samberg in a cover story about how the Internet changed comedy, why America’s Funniest Home Videos won’t go away (with interactive video) and perspectives on what makes jokes funny from comic Demetri Martin – all this, among “other big issues,” as the WIRED team puts it.

“Layering in sharing and retail functionality is the natural evolution of the consumer experience we hope to deliver and a part of what continues to make this experiment in digital publishing so exciting,” says Howard Mittman, VP & Publisher of WIRED. “And thanks to sponsorship from Adobe we’re able to showcase the new features to a wider audience so they can touch and see the ways that our tablet product continues to evolve.”

More:

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8:38 PM Permalink

InDesign CS5.5 announced with support for Digital Publishing Suite

Today, the Creative Suite team unveiled a new update to Design Premium, InDesign and other products in the Creative Suite line that includes exciting new support for Digital Publishing Suite. InDesign CS5.5 will ship with tools that enable designers to start creating digital magazines, newspapers, corporate publications and advertising for reading on tablet devices such as Apple iPad, BlackBerry PlayBook (coming soon) and a wide variety of Android tablets for tablet devices. With InDesign CS5.5, designers can use the new Folio Producer toolset to insert interactvity into layouts, preview publications on the desktop, and upload them for final production with Digital Publishing Suite hosted services.

What’s included in the Folio Producer toolset?

  • Overlay Creator panel. Currently available through the Digital Publishing Suite prerelease program*, this panel will ship with InDesign CS5.5 to allow designers to directly insert interactivity into layouts destined for tablet devices.  This interactivity includes video, audio, panoramic views, 360-degree rotation of objects, pan and zoom of images, integration of HTML5 content as well as other additional options.

  • Folio Builder panel. A new panel, the Folio Builder panel will provide access from within InDesign to the hosted services of Digital Publishing Suite.  Users will be able to upload layouts into the Folio Producer service, that allows production staff to reorder layouts, add metadata and prepare .folio files for delivery.  Digital Publishing Suite requires a separate account, which is sold separately.
  • Content Viewer for Desktop. Designers can preview layouts and interactivity they’ve designed using Content Viewer for Desktop before outputting for publication on tablet devices.
  • Digital Publishing Plug-in for InDesign. This plug-in, currently available through the Digital Publishing Suite prerelease program, allows backend components to communicate with one another, and will now ship with InDesign CS5.5.

With the new Folio Producer tools, designers and creative professionals will have the ability to start creating these interactive publications with InDesign CS5.5 at their fingertips.  Emin Kadi, founder and creative director of Clear Magazine (and who has used Digital Publishing Suite to create the magazine’s iPad app), indicates his enthusiasm for the tools as part of InDesign. “Now we’re leveraging the latest tools in Creative Suite 5.5 Design Premium to stay at the forefront of technology and design, by creating exciting experiences on tablets like the iPad with 360-degree product views, slide shows, integrated videos, pop-up text and more – almost like a TV channel,” he said.

See how Clear Magazine is at the forefront of technology and design in this short video below:

Adobe Creative Suite 5.5 is scheduled to ship within 30 days with availability through authorized resellers, the Adobe.com store in North America, and through Adobe direct sales.

For more info

*The Digital Publishing Suite prerelease program will soon phase out.  Login to your prerelease account for current timeframes and additional details.

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7:17 PM Permalink

Professional Edition – New Lower Platform Fee

Since we announced Digital Publishing Suite, we’ve seen a tremendous interest from all parts of the publishing industry in creating publications for tablet devices. Through our prerelease program and in our customer meetings, we’ve listened to many of you on how to make the price point for Digital Publishing Suite accessible to a broader segment of publishers. I’m excited to report that we’ve lowered the platform fee from US$699/month to US$495/month with a required annual upfront purchase. With this new pricing, additional publishers will be able to use the tools and hosted services to transform print publications for tablet devices.

The Professional Edition of Digital Publishing Suite will be available later in Q2 2011, and is priced using a monthly platform fee + a per .folio download fee. Enterprise Edition shipped previously in March 2011, provides integration with backend publishing systems, and is available through a custom quote, which begins at US$50,000 annually.

For more details on Digital Publishing Suite pricing, see http://www.adobe.com/products/digitalpublishingsuite/pricing/

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9:42 PM Permalink

InDesign is evolving with tighter integration for digital publishing

The InDesign team yesterday released an exciting sneak peek of what’s coming next as InDesign is evolving to take advantages of the latest in digital publishing.  Check out this new video by my colleague Colin Fleming as he shows how you can create interactivity with the Overlay Creator panel directly from InDesign for documents destined for tablet devices.

For more info on how Creative Suite is evolving, join the Creative Suite evangelists on Monday, April 11 at 9AM/pacific time for a live Q&A on Facebook. See http://on.fb.me/hRjwoC for more details.

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6:50 PM Permalink

UK technology mag iGIZMO launches on Android using Digital Publishing Suite

Today, a guest post from my colleague Emma Wilkinson of Adobe UK.

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Dennis Publishing has recently launched its popular UK consumer technology digital magazine, iGIZMO on the Android platform using Content Viewer for Android, part of Digital Publishing Suite.  It is the first digital magazine to be available on Android in the UK for devices like the Motorola Xoom.

The iGIZMO app for Android was created using a combination of Adobe InDesign and Adobe Digital Publishing Suite. Dennis Publishing has always intended to take the beautifully designed, highly interactive editorial content of the popular iPad version to a wider range of devices and it therefore made sense to begin with developing it for the popular Android platform. Using Content Viewer for Android, iGIZMO can author its content once and then deploy it on multiple platforms — the company last year  launched iGIZMO on iPad and now it reaches additional readers on the Android platform

I contacted, James Billington the editor at iGIZMO for his view on the Android launch of iGIZMO.  “I’m hugely proud about the debut of iGIZMO on Android,” he said. “The magazine looks and works like a dream – it’s such a fantastic technological and design achievement. We’ve had great success on the iPad and with the sheer number of Android tablets now hitting the market we hope to entertain even more eyeballs, on even more tablets. We’re all about innovation, and bursting onto the Android scene shows iGIZMO is continuing its position as an envelope-pushing, pioneering product. We’re having fun taking our readers where they haven’t gone before.”

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5:55 PM Permalink