“Maybe [publishers] have been ignoring a whole piece of the publishing sphere when we don’t measure book citations”
Martijn Roelandse, Head of Publishing Innovation, Springer Nature
What is the value of a scholarly book and how can publishers increase that value? Historically, publishers have only had the ability to judge a book by its sales, equating the value of each book to the single-unit sales total. Academics, particularly in the Humanities and Social Sciences (H/SS), depend on books for their research, but as authors, how do they know the full impact of their work?
Analytic tools for single-title performance are now emerging via ebook and A&I aggregation platforms, while some large publishers are also developing their own in-house resources to measure a book’s reach. As these measurements for success are becoming more commonplace, new pressures for improving a book’s performance are emerging. Through enhanced metadata at the chapter level – particularly abstracts – publishers have a clear opportunity to drive usage, provide value to authors, and enrich the user experience. Publishers Communication Group (PCG) has created this white paper, Increasing the Value of Scholarly Books, to examine the return on investment publishers in H/SS fields may gain by adding chapter-level abstracts and curated keywords to their metadata. PCG ultimately concludes that there are multiple and long-term benefits to publishers for enhanced chapter-level metadata and that demand for these assets is rapidly increasing.
These benefits include:
- Greater Revenue
- Increased discoverability and book usage
- Relatedness among a publisher’s content, regardless of format
- Insights to librarians to assist in purchasing decisions
- Improved author relationships
- Support of the next generation of academics in their research habits.