Beyond the Book, Part III: Creating Revenue on Digital Newsstands

You’ve probably noticed that there was a Bartstrike this week. Since our October speaker, TypeEngine CEO Jamie Smyth, is visiting us all the way from Seattle (and we all know how truly non-refundable plane tickets are), we made some changes to tomorrow’s event to keep our word. Of course, the Bart is running again, but we like this new plan so much, we’re sticking with it!
Here’s the new plan: Join us for dinner with Jamie Smyth, founder of TypeEngine, “the WordPress of Digital Newsstands,”  at Plouf restaurant on Wednesday at 5:30 pm for a more intimate yet casual dinner with the CEO. Ask him questions and get his insights with a smaller group.Then, on Thursday, we have a live webinar. Come to the Berrett-Koehler office in San Francisco at 11:30 am PST for a live presentation and discussion with Smyth, or, join us virtually at the same time, as the presentation is broadcast as a webinar with FUZE. Here are instructions for joining the webinar.
Event Overview:

Last month, Digital Book World’s Peter McCarthy praised digital newsstand publications as an exciting and lucrative new frontier for publishers. Condé Nast saw a 268% spike in subscriptions within two weeks of the Apple Newsstand launch in 2012, but magazines don’t have to be the only ones cashing in on new readers in the newsstand app.

Most publishers are looking for a standout mobile strategy, but it can be tough to know where to start, and expensive. The newsstand not only makes a subscription-based publication possible, but according to our event’s speaker, it’s much easier and cheaper to tap into than you’d think! We’ve brought newsstand expert and founder of the “WordPress of Digital Newsstands” Jamie Smyth to share his insights on why the “Newsstand” app in your phone or iPad is worth investing in — and he’ll even show us how to do it on a truly indie budget (less than $1,000 a year!).

This event will focus on the basic ins and outs of the newsstand: 
  • How can publishers use a “digital magazine” format to sell books, and how are other publishers already doing this?
  • How easy is it to set up a newsstand publication? What’s involved in set-up?
  • What are the advantages/disadvantages of publishing through the newsstand over or in addition to a regular ebookstore?
Want to know more about how the digital newsstand works? Here are some quick facts:
  • Over 500 million Apple devices carry a digital newsstand, and Android devices have their own newsstand now (Google Play), as well.
  • Publishers like Random House and Osprey are already tapping into the digital newsstand’s excellent discoverability outside of the traditional App Store.
  • It’s a store built just for publications — no games or other apps are available in the newsstand, so everyone browsing in the newsstand is looking specifically for content apps.


JAMIE SMYTH is the CEO and founder of magazine app builder TypeEngine, and app developer The Smyth Group, whose digital publications and apps have been praised by The GuardianMediaBistro, PandoDaily, and more. He lives in Seattle. Twitter: @JamieMSmyth

TypeEngine creates magazine apps that are designed from the ground up for Apple’s iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch. Publishers own their apps, release magazines under their own names and get subscription fees paid directly to them from Apple. TypeEngine will also submit apps for Apple’s approval on behalf of publishers, removing an important barrier to entry for independent publishers.
Upcoming 2013 Events:
November: WordPress Made Easy — with our own Karma Bennett!
December: Holiday Party (woohoo!)