E-publishing in its simplest form refers to the digital publication of electronic books and electronic articles and these e-books and e-articles are easily available over the internet
In its very short period of existence, it has changed the very way people use to receive content, irrespective of whether it is a newspaper or a large book. Gone are the days when you had to wait for days to have your favorite novel to be delivered to your home. Similarly for authors the wait for getting your book published has also reduced drastically. E-publishing as an industry is quite complex than it usually appears, owing to the myriad technical and user aspects that are involved in the delivery of content.
To understand the complexity of the sector one needs to delve deep into what e-publishing covers. To start with, it allows people who are interested in publishing their articles to a wide audience. This can be done through a website or through documents say PDF files which store the content. Another source of e-publishing is CD-Rom"s. Although they were initially meant for a small audience, with the progress it make with this limited source, the idea of expanding this form of idea was initiated. It also offers high end content like research papers online that can be accessed only through secured logins.
Typically a website forms the primary medium of delivering content in digital format. In other words, publisher uses it website to connect the user with his desired content which can be a downloadable text file or even a video tutorial. Irrespective of the form in which content is delivered, e-publishers aim to reach the maximum number of people. In addition e-publishing has numerous other performance parameters which can ideally be grouped in a balanced scorecard.
The number of factors that are involved in the process of e-publishing mandates the use of proficient performance management tools. Quite expectedly a balanced scorecard comes across as a preferred choice owing to the flexibility it provides. Typically an e-publishing scorecard will have four major categories includes Financial perspective, Online Reach, Content Delivery and Customer Service Perspective and Online Subscription value perspective. Some of the perspectives under these categories can range from operational profit percentage, ratio of publication that is available online, online subscriber base ratio, the ease of accessibility and average time to respond to any customer ticket. In addition perspectives that look at the strength of the business model like average subscription time, cancellation rate and re-subscription rate can be devised.
Together, they end up covering most criteria through which the performance of e-publishing firm can be gauged. With the careful selection of KPIs and through the insightful use of a balanced scorecard, an e-publishing firm can surely look to improve its overall profitability and business.
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