Book Business EXTRA! Q&A -- Cofounder of iAmplify Speaks About Helping HarperCollins Provide Audio and Video Content Online That Go ‘Beyond the Book.’
HarperCollins new Digital Media Cafe (harpercollins.iamplify.com) opened for business earlier this week. The new online venture charges for subscription and on-demand audio and video downloads featuring interviews and behind-the-scenes snippets of the publishing houses’ top talents. The distribution platform tools for the venture were created by iAmplify, a two-year-old publisher of digital media, who began working with Harper earlier this year.
iAmplify Cofounder Jack Hidary spoke with Book Business EXTRA! about the new venture for offering premium downloads that allow publishers to go ‘beyond the book.’ Hidary said he believes this enterprise demonstrates a more sustainable business model for the book industry.
Book Business EXTRA! -- What did you offer HarperCollins in terms of making digital content delivery a reality?
Jack Hidary -- I think iAmplify has several components. I think that the partnership really succeeds because of both parties. Harper, I think, realizes, from their point of view, that everything is going digital and also ‘beyond book.’ Book publishing in terms of a business model is undergoing a fundamental change. Rather than saying hey, let’s just sell $20 to $30 from Jack Welch every three years when he comes out with a book, there is a more sustainable, annuitized regular model of revenue that we can have with an author and celebrity like Jack Welch ... It’s to go ‘beyond the book.’
EXTRA! -- How will this build additional revenue?
Hidary -- The book business model now is to come out with a $30 product, which is a lumpy and hard-to-predict, quick fall-off after the book is published type of business model. How about a better business model, a more annuity-based business model. Yes, we’ll still come out with physical books, but we translate the people who love Jack Welch into a cadre of subscribers and a’ la cart users of Jack Welch interviews, translate that into regular new insight from Jack Welch that can give users what Jack is thinking today ... We want to know what Jack thinks about that, not just what he wrote two years ago.