A License to Drive Revenue
As the book publishing industry continues to shift and evolve, many publishers are seeking to incorporate additional revenue streams into their existing business models. One channel that more and more publishers are experimenting with is product licensing—allowing the use of a brand name, patent or other proprietary right in exchange for a fee or royalty.
Highlights for Children, a publisher of educational books and magazines for kids, is one of those companies that is dipping its toe into the product-licensing waters. Robin Sayetta, Highlights for Children's vice president of licensing, recently spoke with Book Business Extra about launching the company's product licensing program, which includes its top-20-ranking iPhone app.
Book Business Extra: How is Highlights for Children incorporating product licensing into its marketing efforts?
Robin Sayetta: Licensing will become an important brand extension for Highlights. Our brand and content [are] appropriate for extension to a variety of products, ranging from video games, games and puzzles, toys, stationery, crafts and more. Right now, our licensing program is in its infancy. It's an integrated effort, so the licensed products will be woven into our marketing efforts, [which] could include something as simple as featuring licensed products on our website and selling them through our proprietary channels, to coordinating [our print publications] with licensed products at retail [locations].
…One example is the Highlights Hidden Pictures iPhone app that we developed with our partner MoBad LLC. [Highlights publishes a "Hidden Pictures" series of books.] We promoted the game on our website with a unique page, via email blasts to select customers, and we even created a cover burst for our reception-room magazines announcing the availability of the app.
Extra: What steps needed to be taken in-house at Highlights to establish a product licensing program?
Sayetta: … The most important step was to ensure that we translated our core values [and] real commitment to children and families into our partnerships and products.