If Only…Dead Tree Edition Gives Predictions for 2015

[responsive]DeadtreePressPass1[/responsive]A slightly giddy D. Eadward Tree has finally joined the ranks of prognosticators with his predictions for publishing in 2015. And boy, are they doozies.

“When glancing at my article in the current issue of Publishing Executive, I had a revelation: Now that one of the publishing industry’s leading magazines had called on me for predictions, I’ve graduated from blogger to media pundit,” he writes in his Dead Tree Edition blog.

His piece is funny, pithy and still includes some good insights into the ongoing issues that confront the publishing industry. He riffs on social media (“Google will pull the plug on Google Plus. No one will notice the difference.”) and QR codes (“Some magazine ads will still include QR codes. And consumers still won’t bother scanning them.”); big data (including “Chris Christie-sized Data”) and native advertising (“If you think [this] is bad, wait until you see foreign-born advertising.”).

Between the humor, the article does touch on some real challenges facing the industry, including the ongoing uncertainty at the USPS. Tree asserts that we won’t see rates go down, regardless of the expiration of the exigent rate hikes.

“Not sure if that will be from a court order or Congressional action,” he writes. “All I know is, don’t ever bet on government getting rid of a temporary tax or fee.”

He also predicts that “more web sites will jump into the printed magazine business,” something we continue to report on here. Meanwhile traditional newsstands will likely see some gains this year while the digital one at Apple will continue to melt down.

And one surprising idea: “The content-marketing bubble will burst when non-publishing companies realize how few people are viewing their content and that it’s not generating actual sales. Some will find it more efficient to use — perish the thought — paid advertising.”

Content marketing only works when it’s done well, and maybe this is the year that we’ll see that realization dawn on those who can’t or won’t create quality, informative content aimed at their audiences’ hot buttons.

However we look at it, 2015 is going to be an interesting year in this crazy business. Hang on.