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  • From 95 Theses to eBooks being #1


    If the printed word had brainstormed a go-to-market strategy to spread everywhere in the 16th century, it couldn’t have done better than violent religious controversy. Luther’s 95 Theses and the invention of the printing press dovetailed to create what the Economist recently described as an early example of a viral marketing campaign that spread the Reformation — and, by extension, print culture.

    The Economist is keen to highlight the similarities to social media (and multimedia content; woodcuts were the apps of the middle ages) — but don’t miss how Luther took advantage of three opportunities that have a nice corollary with digital publishing.

    • Existing audience = Marketing
    • Short form content  = Form
    • Easy printing capabilities = Technology advancements

    Technology and the content form make sense — broadsheets were the Middle Ages’ Kindle Singles and the printing press’s invention made them easy to scale.

    But what about Marketing? Leaving the social spread aside, there’s an interesting perspective here. The pamphlet craze kicked off when the 95 Theses were nailed to the door of the Witenberg church. In the Middle Ages, churches were like the most popular Websites — everyone went there; they got the most traffic. Give that audience content that it just has to read (after all, everyone else is!) and you’ve got massive adoption.

    The lesson for digital is what we keep saying at Vook: If you have a Website, if you have any kind of property that has a following, that has, if you will, church goers — then you’ve got a bookstore.

    The authors, the technology, and the content exist — it’s the sites that need to turn their audiences into readers and give those readers what they want.

    Here’s to digital publishing in 2024. More importantly, here’s to the church doors: May you share your own Theses with the world!


    Kindle Format 8 in action

    Kindle Format 8 in action

    Amazon announced Kindle Format 8 and the Kindle Gen 2 platform today. It’s the first file format announcement that has me as excited as the launch of a new tablet device.


    Mobi needed an update to match the level of design you can achieve in ePub. Vook lets users create uniquely styled eBooks with our styling tool—but until KF8, many of those grace notes were lost in Mobi. For everyone who wants to read better looking books, this new standard is going to raise the bar everywhere. It’s like color coming to television—once people see what digital books can be, they won’t be satisfied with the old way of doing things.

    And we’re perfectly positioned to take advantage of the new format. Vook already lets you design the sharp, great looking ebooks that KF8 will support. Though there’s no mention of video in the features, the fact that you can display embedded fonts, drop caps, various CSS styling, color and borders syncs perfectly with what we can help you design.

    I asked our VP of engineering Rob Guttman what he thought KF8 meant for Vook. He said, “We’re that much more valuable because we can take advantage of all the styling offered in the new format and we can do the translation to the KF8 file type immediately. All you have to do is design. You worry about the content and making your content look great—we’ll handle the technical details.”

    As ever, sign up for the beta, and get ready to produce some eye-catching eBooks for for Kindle.

    TextVook Trivia Contest on Twitter

    Want to win a $25 gift card from Dr. Vook, Ph.D, star of our new TextVooks series? Make sure you follow us on Twitter @vooktv to answer questions about subjects from his new enhanced apps and ebooks starting tomorrow at 9 am EST with another round of trivia at 12 pm (M-F throughout the month of April). We’ll be giving away two $25 iTunes gift cards a day to 28 lucky winners and using the hashtag #TextVook throughout the contest. Click here for full contest rules and stay tuned to our blog for all of the latest Vook news.

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    Vook is a happy camper!

    Vook had a fantastic time at Book Camp 2: The Return of Book Camp yesterday! We enjoyed a lot of discussions about open platforms, design for enhanced e-books in the editorial stages, and work flow management for digital products. We couldn’t walk anywhere without hearing about apps, digital product development, e-book marketing and technology advancements. And we apologize for eating some of the gobstoppers, we didn’t realize those were probably not Book Camp intended.

    We also enjoyed connecting with a lot of notable figures in the publishing space, such as Sharon Cordesse (sales manager for conferences) from O’Reilly Media, Brett Sandusky (director of production innovation) from Kaplan Publishing , and Matt Schwartz (director of digital strategy and business development) from Random House.

    As usual, it was a pleasure to see Ami Greko keeping the pieces in place and to hear Guy Gonzales drop some knowledge on how to build a sustainable social community.

    Make sure you come visit us this week at Tools Of Change and say, “hi!”

    Have a Vook week!

    Top 5 Reasons for Working with Vook

    Happy February!

    We’ve successfully made it to the month of love, where new and old partnerships can continue to blossom. In the spirit of partnerships, I wanted to take a moment to outline the top five reasons you should work with us to light up your content and provide your audience with a powerful Vook multimedia experience:

    1.            We are the leader in enhanced content. Vook has published the most enhanced titles in the iBookstore and on the Amazon Kindle App. Our JFK app was #1 in the iPad Paid Book Apps upon its release, and we were one of the first enhanced eBook on iTunes through our partnership with Simon & Schuster.

    2.            We distribute to a wide range of platforms. Our titles are on iTunes, Kindle App, and the iBookstore. We are currently developing opportunities for a host of other platforms. All titles are turned around within weeks, delivered to market, and promoted to digital audiences, including Facebook and Twitter.

    3.            We provide scalable solutions. Our global network of professional film producers allow us to quickly turn around video and audio production. Content is then added to our original MotherVook software and edited together to create unmatched, rich content—bringing text to life!

    4.            We carefully promote all titles. Each title is positioned and named after we’ve researched what will make it marketable. We pick eye-catching cover art for increased marketability. Our careful account management team makes sure that our distribution partners are alerted to new titles and promotional opportunities.

    5.            Maximized Revenue. Take advantage of backlist titles and transform them into a brand new content experience to revitalize sales.

    If you have any questions or would like to get started in creating your very own Vook, please visit http://publish.vook.com/.

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