Andrew AlbaneseIn 2014, data is big – and Big Data is even bigger. From baseball to genetics, mining data for business insights can confirm hunches – or annihilate them. Publishers may have the skills and tools necessary to make data-driven financial and marketing decisions, but how – and how much – will they use them? In an industry as diverse as publishing, there is more than one answer to the big data question.

“For higher education, for example,  data and analytics have become a mission-critical reality as publishers invest in new platforms that combine subject matter, digital learning enhancements, and metrics of how students are interacting with the subject, then connect the  results to the universities’ information systems,” reports Andrew AlbanesePublishers Weekly senior writer.

“But for  ‘trade’ especially, publishing has always been a ‘gut business.’ Data-driven decision-making is an about-face on the intuition that built the last century of literature,” he tells CCC’s Chris Kenneally. “There is real tension there.”

Every Friday, CCC’s “Beyond the Book” speaks with the editors and reporters of “Publishers Weekly” for an early look at the news that publishers, editors, authors, agents and librarians will be talking about when they return to work on Monday.

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