Home » Community » Articles » Top 5 Challenges Facing the Book Publishing Industry Today (& How the 2024 Publishing Innovation Forum can help!)

The publishing industry is always changing, and is very different now than it was even five years ago. That’s why the Firebrand Group introduced the Publishing Innovation Forum—to educate publishers on how to adapt to the many changes of the industry and learn to thrive.

Here are five critical challenges faced by the book publishing industry today, and how the Publishing Innovation Forum will help you tackle them.

1. Book Discovery and Market Saturation

In the year 1907, there were less than 10,000 books published annually in the United States. Compare that to 2023, when nearly 4 million new book titleswere published, with self-published titles accounting for at least 2.3 million — over 50%. No wonder it’s so hard for readers to discover your book! There are literally millions of new titles to choose from each year.

Perfecting your marketing and publicity tactics has never been more important. At the Publishing Innovation Forum, we’ve gathered experts from across the industry to educate publishers on marketing and publicity strategies to increase discoverability.

Attendees will learn how to…

2. Understanding and Meeting Accessibility & Sustainability Standards

By mandating accessibility, the European Accessibility Act (EAA) is transforming the book publishing industry’s digital landscape. This new legislation introduced mandatory accessibility standards for publishers in the European Union or those that sell in the EU market, regardless of location, leaving many publishers wondering how to successfully incorporate accessibility into their EPUB files.

In addition, global book production emits more than 40 million tons of CO2 and uses 32 million trees each year in the U.S. alone. Recently, publishers have made immense efforts to make the industry more sustainable and environmentally-friendly, but there remains much room for improvement.

In efforts to improve our industry by making our books environmentally friendly and accessible to everyone, the Publishing Innovation Forum will have sessions providing guidance and advice on accessible and sustainable practices, as well as measuring the cost of sustainability and the implications of the European Accessibility Act.

3. Technological and Digital Advancements, Including AI

From the rise of AI technology to the struggle of converting content into multiple formats across multiple devices, technological and digital advancements have been reshaping the way books are written, marketed, and consumed. In order to stay competitive in the industry, publishers of all sizes must learn to adapt and embrace these changes.

The evolution of technology is a critical theme of the Publishing Innovation Forum. Speakers will discuss how to optimize digital strategy to improve accessibility, marketing, distribution, catalogs, audiobooks, executive decisions, rights & royalties, and so much more. There will also be multiple sessions discussing the impact of artificial intelligence on the book publishing industry, including navigating AI & audiobooks, as well as an open floor discussionwhere attendees can weigh in on the concerns and potential opportunities of AI.

4. Supply Chain & Distribution Challenges

Understanding the supply chain and distribution is crucial to your survival as a publisher, but the logistics of book distribution is constantly changing. The Publishing Innovation Forum will feature three independent distributors as they discuss common distribution challenges and how to overcome them.

Attendees will learn about…

  • Navigating the increased costs of shipping and printing
  • New marketing approaches for distributors
  • How distributors are adapting to evolving digital sales models
  • Changes in distribution due to new growth opportunities in digital, special markets, and direct-to-consumer sales

5. Complex Rights & Royalties Management

Getting the details of a rights and royalties contract correct is essential for protecting and managing your publishing company, but the process is often extremely time-consuming and error-prone. Not to mention, new products and business models have recently created even MORE complexity.

There are steps you can take NOW to achieve a more efficient and profitable future for your company! At the Publishing Innovation Forum, attendees will learn about current rights and royalties challenges, as well as modern solutions and practical steps for effective implementation.

As book publishing professionals, we ALL rely on constant adaptation and innovation to thrive in our evolving publishing landscape. The Publishing Innovation Forum was designed to educate industry professionals, including experienced executives and those new to the industry, by offering solutions to critical changes and struggles faced by the publishing community today.

Join us in embracing innovation & shaping the future of publishing!


Register before June 30 to secure Early Bird rates and get 15% off!

SPECIAL GROUP RATE: Multiple registrations from the same company may use the GROUP code at checkout for an extra $50 off each!