Publisher Workflow Efficiency – Top of the list in 2018

Publishing Executive shared a report on their research into ‘Top Technologies Publishers Will Buy In 2018’, which uncovered some interesting new trends among publishers.

Liam Handford

Liam Handford

November 5th, 2018 | Reading Time: 3 mins

This month, Publishing Executive published the results of research they conducted into Top Technologies Publishers Will Buy In 2018 (definitely worth checking out). Their report shares not only the findings for their initial goal, but also uncovers some interesting new trends around publisher workflows.

The overwhelming theme of the results is undoubtedly that publishers are looking internally, whether it’s a renewed focus on data analytics, or improving their workflows.

The focus now isn’t on racing into some new big social platform or exploiting another acquisition channel, the industry’s transition to digital and having digitally-minded strategies to reach readers has already happened. Now they’re looking at tackling the roadblocks that slowed it all down. A polar opposite to what was driving innovation among publishers in 2017

Publisher Workflows Hindering Revenue Generation

When it came to what Publishers believed would drive the most revenue, the top result being Workflow & Project Management as shown in Pub Exec’s chart below. isn’t a surprise to us here at Canvasflow, but it does indicate a change in attitudes.

Efficiency is finally being seen as the biggest blocker to revenue generation; overly complex workflows that haven’t quite adapted to all the new products and channels, making every effort to create and optimise different content take far longer than needed.

pub exec publisher workflow chart

PubExec’s analysis of the data they collected as well as comments from publishers that they’ve shared with us, highlights how publisher’s pursuit of a diverse range of channels has outgrown their current solutions. Their workflows hinder their ability to experiment since manpower is consumed by these archaic processes.

The standard publisher workflow still consists of creating content multiple times over for different channels, proofing and developing it across different mediums without coherent collaboration tools, and publishing it all through separate platforms separately, it’s too much.

At Canvasflow we’ve encountered clients using workflows that force them to go through a marathon of copy-and-paste or treat every platforms content like an entirely new piece even if the content is the same.

Even worse is sticking to unresponsive PDF content for their app, because the creation and collaboration process of creating responsive content can take up so much time that it feels a necessary evil to keep their content pipeline moving.

In Summary

‘Digital’ is ubiquitous with ‘simple’, or at least it should be, especially when it comes to the world of Digital Publishing.

With all the effort that goes into making content easily accessible across multiple devices and platforms, there’s absolutely no reason why publishers can’t reap similar benefits from making their own production workflows just as simple. Content will take far less time to create and publish, allowing publishers the space to experiment with new product lines or creative reader acquisition.

At Canvasflow we’re constantly trying to find better ways to tackle these problems, which is why we love talking about them. If you’d like to discuss what’s in this article or even ask us a question, leave a comment or email us at

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