Ten years ago, it was all about content conversion and e-deliverables. Today, the digital content proposition is no longer as simple.
Now content needs to be curated, customized, converged, and cloud-based. Publishers and content creators/aggregators big and small are racing to achieve faster times to market; to develop a better understanding of their consumers; to serve ever more customized, agile, mobile, and intuitive content; and to monetize engaged readers.
Balancing cost and quality has always been a major challenge for any publishing or content company. Publishers Weekly (PW) interviewed select vendors—a small sampling out of hundreds of digital solutions companies thriving in India—to understand how automation, innovation, and persistence are the key to their competitiveness (and survival).
This review—which remains as unscientific as it was 10 years ago—is totally discriminating in that it features only vendors that appear on PW's radar, and caught their eyes based on novel solutions, unique workflows, and interesting propositions on dealing with the constantly changing content, consumer demands, and technologies.
Opportunities & Challenges
Waseem Andrabi, senior director for global content services, definitely sees adaptive learning continuing to gain traction throughout 2015, with learning opportunities pushing into new frontiers including virtual reality. More publishers, he says, will consider continuous publication models rather than packaging products and publishing periodically. “The rise of smartphones and tablets as the primary user interface—instead of PCs or laptops—means that content has to be structured for seamless data interchange across media and devices. Such ‘transformative publishing’ requires publishers to constantly evolve and transform workflows to remain relevant. The content itself needs to transform as well.”
Marianne Calilhanna, Cenveo’s marketing director, believes tools for researchers and authors are becoming increasingly important. “Today’s researchers and authors are computer-savvy, and they expect to have access to tools that they can use. So when we offered publishers Smart Proof—an online proofing and correction tool that is a part of the Cenveo Publisher Suite—the reception was overwhelmingly positive. At the end of the day, authors simply want to communicate their ideas, and they want to be in control of that communication.”
The Cenveo Publisher Suite, adds Calilhanna, is developed with the core objective of delivering quality content as fast as possible. “What is important to our publishers is editorial integrity, and fast delivery of structured, high-quality content. We push publishing back into the hands of those that matter most—the editors and authors—and with that, the black hole of vendor processing becomes transparent, consistent, predictable, and nonthreatening. Through tools such as Smart Edit and Smart Proof, we put the power in the authors’ hands, and we provide publishers with the confidence that our tools will manage the content structure while the authors manage the content.” The Cenveo Publisher Suite has been proven to reduce turnaround time by up to four days, reduce errors during proofing, and allow for creation of new products and deliverables on the fly within one to three days.
Meanwhile, Cenveo’s Digital Content group is busy designing learning products to help the 21st-century learner succeed. “Online courseware, quizzes, learning apps, games, simulations, you name it. Their quest is to bring learning opportunities to where the learners are. Hence the group’s mantra, ‘design once, deploy everywhere.’ All our e-learning modules are packaged in contemporary interfaces that are smooth and easy to navigate,” explains Waseem Andrabi, senior director for global content services.
As for growth segments, Calilhanna sees “the opportunities in digital fulfillment and content-management archiving, and cloud-based software as a service. Complex project management and custom-built architecture for publishers that cannot afford to hire such resources in-house is also big. These are the areas that Cenveo is working on while continuing to improve our turnaround time to publish quality content with a faster time to market.”
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