We live in a world of rapidly advancing technology. This means that it is up to the rest of the world, to keep up. Publishing has always been a form that has had to adapt to new technology and has also demanded that technology keep moving it forward. Now with people having so much access to screens, there is a growing demand for digital media products.
What is Digital Publishing?
Digital publishing is the publishing of printed materials on electronic platforms. Regardless of the product, being published digitally means that the material is more accessible. We live in an age where most people have computers, tablets, and smartphones which means that when things are printed digitally rather than traditionally people have constant access to them. There are two major directions that digital publishing takes. When people talk about publishing in a traditional sense, you think of publishing books. Ebook publishing has become popular, especially with the rise of platforms like Kindle. The other direction digital publishing takes is materials published on blogs and websites. These contain things like articles, journals, newsletters, catalogs, company reports, magazines, and advertisements.
What is the Difference Between Traditional Publishing and Digital Publishing?
The Main differences between the two are as follows:
1) that in traditional publishing once you are ready to distribute you have to print physical copies, whether it is a book or a magazine.
2) the act of distribution itself is very different between the two methods. When you have physical copies, you have to send them out to bookstores, grocery stores, newsstands etc. It also means that you have a certain number of printed copies and have to print more when necessary.
Once you publish something online it becomes accessible to readers. You can publish books and sell the places like Amazon and do not have to worry about the number of copies. The way you distribute is to get it on sites to sell it or to promote the websites you published on.
What are the Advantages of Digital Publishing?
The production costs and ongoing publishing costs are lower which is a great incentive for companies as well as the change 7in competition. Not only is the cost lower from not having to keep printing copies of your material but there are no losses from those materials not selling. For instance, magazines and newspapers that need to stay current can’t continue to sell the same material until it is gone but must continue producing new material. Online forums do not have this problem. When publishing on the web, you can reach a wider audience. Your material goes from being confined to where you distribute physical copies, to being globally accessible. You can reach people directly, anywhere… instantly. What do you want to say?
What are the Disadvantages to Digital Publishing?
While certainly not something that stops people from publishing digitally, something to keep in mind is that you have to set up your material to be viewable from different devices. This means you have to have different formats so that your material works on a larger computer screen down to a small smartphone. When you are using a digital device, it is also likely that there will be ads that will pop up which can become annoying to some. The argument about whether or not it is better to have a physical copy or not is more of a personal preference but many still like to have access to physical materials so at least, for the time being, we will have both options.
What are the First Steps to Digital Publishing?
Publishing an eBook
If you want to publish your book digitally, there are a few things to consider. Are you trying to publish your book through self-publishing or are you trying to get it published through another company? If you are taking the self-publish route, the first thing you want to do is research (I am going to be telling you to research a lot in this article so bear with me). You are going to want to research the niche that you have chosen to write in. This will help you find the right resources to help you with the process. You can choose how much of the work you want to do on your own and how much to look for resources to help you.
You will need to format your book into something like EPUB or KF8. It is important it is formatted correctly so that it can be read on devices like E-Readers. From there you need to find the platform you are making your books accessible on, such as Amazon or Kindle. You can check out my article The Process of Publishing ‘Coach Culture’ to check out an interview with an author who has worked through this process.
Publishing to the Web
Alright, like always researching is the place to start. If you want to publish your own articles and blogs you are going to want to know what other people are already doing. The next step is to create your own platform to publish on. The easiest way to do this is to create your own website or blog. You can go to sites that allow you to purchase a URL or go through a platform like WordPress which helps you set up a blog. Once you have your platform you can post your material. Once you have something online it is published and you need to work on maintaining consistency and turn to platforms like social media to build up your following and have a place to share your work with a wider audience.
Publishing Through Existing Platforms
There are two methods for getting your materials published on other people’s platforms. You can write and submit to online magazines and blogs. Generally, you will need to research to find the best match for what you want to write and then find prompts to submit to. You can also try emailing the site directly but this can take a lot of time and you will not hear back from most of these inquiries. The other method is to get a job for a site as a freelancer. This way you write your assignments and the publisher of the site will post them. There are many places online to look for freelancing jobs like this if you do some research.
Now to recap:
- Find a platform to publish on
- Spread the Word
What are some of the Best Resources for Digital Publishing?
There is a wide range of digital publishing resources, it all depends on what kind of help or information you are looking for. For instance, there are platforms that can help you with formatting, ones that can help you with creating your own blog and posting, and some that are just for offering information and learning courses.
If you would like more information about these resources, what they offer, how much they are, and get links directly to them, you can go and check out my article titled Digital Publishing Resources. Here I take the time to go into more details.