Here’s a very good article which talks generically about content but is very much applicable to book publishing content as well. I’ve pulled some of the more interesting excerpts and added my comments below:
Vignette calls this revolution putting ‘content in a context’, emphasizing the fact that web-based content can be presented in many instances and in many forms, but that it must always be relevant to the person accessing it.
Absolutely. This is very much related to the type of layering approach I’ve been envisioning for a successful e-book platform. In addition to content layering, however, this article points out the need to not only be device independent, but device knowledgeable, so that content is properly delivered most effectively.
We are heading for a situation where successful delivery of multimedia content will become a key business differentiator. The companies that do it well, those that target these new channels effectively, will be the companies that prosper in the future. And it will be those companies that implement content management systems reflecting their unique business model that will benefit most.
Without trying to sound overly pessimistic, I would take this a step further and say that the companies that don’t figure this out are likely to be crushed by those that do. They might own a huge stockpile of content today, but if they don’t catch this next wave that content will become less and less valuable, especially as creators of new content start to view them as “yesterday’s media company.”
However, the way in which this information is presented cannot be the same. Anyone that has had to view content on a mobile device ‘dumped’ from an HTML website will recognize the importance of this.
Amen! Have you ever tried to monitor a baseball game in real time with a cell phone or Blackberry? Mobile ESPN probably does just fine, but I’m not paying a premium for that one!
This is the stage where we can begin to appreciate why some enterprises are not ready to exploit multi-channel content distribution. Whilst they will have undoubtedly considered the need for multi-channel capabilities, they will not have taken away focus from their principle money-making channels, where less-technical customers can use the telephone or even shop at branches. The multi-channel vision may not offer rewards straight away, and some of these channels are still largely unproven.
Whatever happens in the digital evolution there is one constant: we are heading for an explosion in multimedia, multi-channel content on a scale not yet fully realized.
Although it sounds like another one of those overblown predictions from the late 1990’s, I totally agree with this observation.