|Drag-and-drop activity from one of G-W's Tizra-hosted digital textbooks shows how digital-first puts readers first.|
For most publishers moving to digital, the best strategy is usually to start with their existing print catalog. Consultants may deride this as a “shovelware” approach (meaning you’re just shoveling print content online), but the truth is it’s the shortest path to getting live with a good quality product, and beginning the process of learning what works and doesn’t work for your readers.
Once this is underway, however, it makes sense to start thinking more strategically about digital first content. What do we mean by digital first? We think of digital first content as material that was born digital, i.e, developed from the outset to take full advantage of the possibilities offered by digital delivery, rather than tacking digital features on as an afterthought.
Digital-first content enables publishers to do more for the customer. For example, educational publisher Goodheart-Willcox (G-W) recently introduced interactive editions of textbooks that include digital-first content such videos, rich animations, interactive diagrams and illustrations, drills such as e-flashcards and games, as well as self-assessments. The company has moved its digital content creation upstream in its production workflow and now begins with digital in mind, teaming book authors and multimedia specialists in close collaboration.
“We are a customer driven company with a rich history of providing excellent quality content,” says Shannon DeProfio, Vice President, Publishing for Goodheart-Willcox. “So when our customers told us they wanted more, we quickly moved to deliver more robust, interactive content that supports their efforts in the classroom and provides a more effective learning resource.”
In support of these efforts, G-W wanted to leverage their strong in-house digital team and subject-matter expertise, while avoiding the distraction of unnecessary software development. Going beyond their initial efforts to take books online, G-W is now using the Tizra digital publishing software to create interactive editions that bring together a wide range of internally and externally developed digital-first content, including content from its companion websites and online courses.
“With Tizra, we can put our digital assets exactly where they need to be and can control who has access very flexibly,” said Julia Seliga, G-W’s Digital Media Manager. “What it comes down to is Tizra helps us build the kind of engaging and exciting products customers love.”
So why should you think about digital first? Here are some points to consider:
- Digital-first content makes all kinds of content more engaging, and makes educational and professional content more effective. Readers stay involved longer, and come back more often, helping you to build your online audience.
- As competition and the pressure to lower prices increase, providing a premium experience through digital-first content allows you to maintain your profit margins and even increase them;
- As consumers fully adopt digital technologies throughout their day, in the form of games, consumer websites and other high-production-value digital experiences, their expectations get steadily higher for levels of interactivity and rich media;
- More and more leading publishers are making the strategic choice to provide digital-first content.
To learn more about how Tizra can help you deliver digital-first content or request a demo, contact us today. Or, read the full Goodheart-Willcox case study here.