Just as music lovers are fans of performers and not of their music label, readers are fans of authors, not of their publisher.
That point—that the author is the brand or the star—was expressed by Ellie Hirschhorn, Chief Digital Officer of Simon & Schuster, and one of the digital executives on the publishing panel at the inaugural Chief Digital Officer (CDO) Summit, held at Thomson Reuters in New York City in February 2013.
That simple insight was the impetus for Simon & Schuster to change its practice of promoting its digital properties on retail partners’ sites, and move to a direct-to-consumer model.
Why? Going directly to the consumer enabled the firm to access “a brew of data” about more than a million of its consumers—including which authors its readers chose to follow or “fan.” That rich data served as the building blocks for creating direct-to-consumer vertical content niches, ranging from clutter busting to parenting.
That’s only one of many digital business strategies shared by Chief Digital Officers in the publishing sector.
Accompanying Hirschhorn on the panel were, from left to right:
- Michael Smith: President, Forbes.com; CDO, Forbes Media
- Fred Santarpia: Chief Digital Officer at Condé Nast Entertainment
- David Kang: Chief Digital Officer at Wenner Media
- Joe Bilman: Chief Digital Officer at American Media Inc.
- Ellie Hirschhorn: Chief Digital Officer at Simon & Schuster
- David Mathison (moderator): Curator, CDO Summit
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If you are tasked with understanding what digital leaders must do in order to succeed in almost any industry, the best place to learn more is at the fast-approaching NYC Chief Digital Officer Summit, presented by Capgemini on April 29 2015.
Take advantage of our Super Early Bird Discount for New York City in April 2015, Amsterdam in July 2015, Toronto in September 2015, London in October 2015, and Sydney in February 2016. Reserve your place now:
NYC 2015 Speakers:
Dr. Didier Bonnet
Jo Ann Saitta
The CDO Summit is the “must-attend” digital event of the year. The 2013 and 2014 CDO Summits received stellar endorsements from dozens of speakers and attendees alike:
Managing Director, Digital Strategy/Editorial Director
Harvard Business Review
Chief Marketing Officer
Chief Digital Officer
Chief Digital Officer
The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research