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Workshop discusses how online retail can help publishers
By a Staff Reporter October 31, 2017
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SHARJAH: The way readers interact with a publisher’s content online and the massive marketing opportunities that publishers can capitalise on in the virtual space, especially while marketing their books in the Arab region where the majority of the populace use mobile devices to make online purchases, was discussed at a workshop here.  The workshop was titled ‘New Trends in Book Sales’ and organised by the Sharjah Book Authority (SBA) on Sunday in collaboration with NYU School of Professional Studies (NYUSPS) Center for Publishing.

In the lead-up to the 36th Sharjah International Book Fair (SIBF 2017), which will be inaugurated this Wednesday, Nov.1 at Expo Centre Sharjah, NYUSPS brought Lane Jantzen, VP Penguin Random House, to address a gathering of publishers from the Arab region and the world.  

Welcoming all attendees to the session, Salim Omar Salim, Director of Sales and Marketing at SBA, said: “Staying true to tradition, the SBA is roping participating publishers into activities and discussions that will enhance your skills and expertise, will help you understand the target audience better, and be equipped with marketing mechanisms that will bolster your outreach and sales. The cycle of life, in many ways, begins and ends with books, and we are delighted to be able to offer a platform for learning and exchange to all of you who have dedicated their lives to creating and disseminating knowledge to our present and future generations.”

Keywords, data codes, metadata, search engine optimisation, algorithms, influencers and other online sales and marketing jargon were the main touchpoints in Jantzen’s presentation as he tried to build a comprehensive yet relatable narrative on how online retail has changed and continues to develop and diversify publishers’ strategy in their quest to reach out to readers with their products.

“As publishers, it is essential for us to define our target reader(s), that is, know exactly who it is who is looking to buy these books. Items like ‘classification’ and ‘category’ which are considered mundane are in fact key in bringing up your books on the top of search results if they are developed and optimised effectively with metadata,” he added.

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