COLUMN 

New year’s resolutions anyone?

James Evelegh suggests a few resolutions for the publishing sector.

By James Evelegh

New year’s resolutions anyone?
Photograph: Moritz Knöringer on Unsplash.

Happy New Year! Have you made any resolutions? I’m proudly 50 hours into my dry-ish January (I started after the bank holiday…) and am drinking lots of herbal tea.

How about resolutions for the publishing sector? Here are a few suggestions:

  1. Do that workflow audit you’ve been putting off for years. If your workflow diagram looks like a plate of spaghetti, then, err… you’ll be underperforming.
  2. Make 'community' a reality. Publishers talk a good game on community, but too often the passion for our readers is unrequited, simply because we give them no means to interact with us or each other. (If you’re looking for tips on community building, check out our recent special feature.)
  3. Fill in the blanks. In a digital world, where everything is measurable, many publishers still struggle to put meaningful figures to what should be key performance indicators. If you’re one of them, then a systems audit should be high on the priority list…
  4. Make your MVPs more… viable. We too often launch new things without properly road testing them. What is frequently missed is a thorough checking of sign-up / login processes. Get normal people to try signing up to your new product and watch carefully what happens.
  5. Re-earn reader trust. In a world where misinformation is rife and malign forces cry “fake news” at every turn, we have to play the long game. The commitment to earning trust needs to be renewed every year.
  6. Be more diverse. Build on the positive words of last year, and take concrete steps to make who we are and what we do better reflect the society we live in.

Progress on any of the above should make for a successful 2022. Here’s to a healthy and prosperous next twelve months.

You can catch James Evelegh’s regular column in the InPubWeekly newsletter, which you can register to receive here.