Ten Reasons Why In-plants Should Offer ePublishing

Tricia Bhattacharya
In-plants are already handling information in printed form. Why not expand the usage of that information to electronic publishing to satisfy your customers’ demands for it?

Have you noticed the recent transition of in-plant production capabilities? Since mobility has become standard in our day-to-day lives, digital capabilities have interjected into the “lives” of in-plants—and that’s a good thing.

At the recent IPMA annual conference, I observed attendees taking notes on iPads and checking their smartphones. It was a testament to how, on a personal level, my colleagues have integrated new technologies into their lives. With the modernization of in-plant production capabilities, in-plants should also expand their services in much the same way with a “full speed ahead” attitude.

According to wearesocial.net, a social media and marketing agency, Internet penetration in the U.S. is at 81 percent and the mobile phone penetration rate is at 101 percent. That means there are more mobile phones than people. The improvements made with Internet speeds and data storage have enhanced the ability to send and receive content via mobile devices.

The greatest threat to in-house production centers is also the greatest opportunity—the disruptive force of digitization. It’s a two-fold scenario: communication predominately happens online, and when materials are printed they are often printed digitally, in shorter runs. The opportunity for in-plants is to capture more digital pages and deliver cross-media communications that their clients are requesting. Ultimately, it’s not about a print or a digital communication vehicle—it’s about print and digital communication vehicles.

In a recent survey conducted by Brigham Young University, 400 students were asked about their print versus digital preferences. In response, 65 percent said they preferred print; 44 percent said they wanted communications in both print and digital forms. Since in-plants already handle printed pieces, it makes sense to expand offerings with complementary services in line with the digital communication trends of today.

One such service is ePublishing, also known as electronic publishing, which includes the digital publication of e-books, EPUBs, digital magazines, and the development of digital libraries and catalogs.

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