Thad McIlroyIt wasn’t so long ago that ‘mobile’ meant the kind of kinetic sculpture that artist Alexander Calder made his trademark.  In 2015, of course, ‘mobile’ is shorthand for a host of handheld wireless technologies that make it possible to live our lives in two worlds – the physical one and the online one.

In books and across all media, mobile matters.  Yet for many publishers and authors, mobile is something of a foreign country inhabited by unfathomable digital natives and littered with devices and technologies.  Published by F+W Media and released in conjunction with this year’s Digital Book World Conference, Mobile Strategies for Digital Publishing offers a snapshot of the fast developing mobile landscape and the range of mobile strategies for book publishers, both print and digital.

“Mobile is no longer an add-on to a desktop computer. Publishers may think they don’t have to prioritize it, but the statistics show repeatedly that the universe is no longer desktop-to-mobile. Mobile is the universe,” says Thad McIlroy, the report author and an electronic publishing analyst based in San Francisco.  “And this realization means it’s not business as usual anymore.

“My advice is rethink the whole strategy for marketing around the notion,” he tells CCC’s Chris Kenneally. “What if it everything were only mobile?  What if we could only reach people through the preexisting apps that are on mobile, engaging them through the games and social media that are on mobile?  Now, there’s a really interesting challenge.  And it’s one that I think book publishers have to surmount in order to revamp the broader online marketing programs that they’re involved with.”

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