Posts Tagged ‘publishing’



Communicating with a New Generation

If you’re going to lead anything you need to learn to communicate across generations. Most of us have no problem communication with those are older than we are, but we often stumble when dealing with the younger generations. I have studied, worked with and watch e generation that prefers learning in a non-sequential, mosaic way–no doubt influenced by the a culture saturated with endless sound and video bytes. I have experienced that first hand in the lives of my own children whose world is one large media bucket where they both learn and interact with information in a much more informal and yet dynamic way than I did at their age. We no longer search for information, but information seeks and finds us whenever we are. Between my Twitter and Facebook feeds I’m constantly aware of news, trivia, the important and the ridiculous searching for me every second of the…

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Because Ministry Matters: The United Methodist Publishing House New Site

The best projects are the ones that have a big vision, great impact, tough challenges and stretches everything you have learned to date. The A Group has recently launched a website that meets all of that criteria and then some: . Ministry Matters started as a vision of Audrey Kidd, COO of The United Methodist Publishing House. Audrey wanted to bring UMPH’s vast collection of reference, scholarly, practical and inspirational content along with blogs, articles, video and audio together in a true community-focused destination. The vision was clear and so were the challenges: how to integrate UMPH’s multiple legacy databases and systems with a dynamic, user-friendly and social media-rich interface. That’s where The A Group comes in. From the site’s name selection, branding, user interface development, back end content management system and finally database integration, our design and programming teams work side-by-side UMPH’s content and IT departments in creating…

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A Life with Purpose

I never saw it coming. The voice on the other end of the phone said in a frail but determined way: “If God gives me four more weeks of life I will finish this book. I’ve been working on it every day.” My eyes swelled up with tears immediately. The man speaking those words, Billy Hornsby, has been battling an aggressive form of cancer that has now moved into his brain. He’s a good friend, a great leader and one the authors I represent. But he didn’t stop there. He paused and then spoke again, “God has been so good to me and I want to help people to discover the amazing life He can give them. I just need a little more time.” overwhelmed by Billy’s response I had to pull over and try to get myself back together. Just hours before I had a completely different conversation with…

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Can The Local Church Help Save Christian Publishing?

Traditional publishing is not what it used to be.  The digital revolution has now reached book publishers and for the first time ever, electronic titles outpaced hardcovers on Publishers everywhere are downsizing, and even long-time NYC headquarters are being moved away from the city to cheaper rent  in nearby Connecticut.  Christian publishers are not exempt from this industry-wide shake up. I’ve sat through many meetings, taught seminars and have consulted with several different Christian publishing houses. I believe the Church is going to play a key role, if the role, in keeping publishers afloat.  However, publishers better deploy the right strategy or they won’t prevail. Over 56 million people attend a Christian church  (excluding Catholics) every week in America. That’s a lot of resources needed for preachers, teachers and small group leaders,  and a lot of money for publishers and content providers. With the digital revolution flattening the distance…

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The A Group Brand and Development Division: Answer to a Modern Problem

When I first began The A Group some nine years ago, it was designed to fit a need within the Christian landscape for strategic marketing solutions. Being strategy driven instead of product, we birthed The A Group Technologies as communication shifted from print to online, to social media and now into mobile platforms. We have worked with authors and publishers from early on, but over the past few years the publishing world has gone through a major transformation as more and more content providers and brands try to navigate uncharted territory. The A Group Brand Development is our answer to that need. Whether we’re working with an established brand or an emerging one, we’ll help our clients in these key areas: To find the intersection between publishing, marketing, and technology that elevates the brand To fill the gaps in a confused, changing industry To emotionally and intellectually connect mission and…

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Christian Publishers Reclaim Their Stories

I’m blessed to be able to sit in strategic meetings with great people who work for several different Christian Publishing Houses. In years’ past I heard comments such as “our competitor is getting heavy into fiction. We need to buy more fiction work and be competitive.” But in time, the publishing house that had been know for its excellence in children’s materials, for example, began publishing too many titles outside its core competency. It couldn’t deliver on its new products and it weakened, as well, the very product line that had made it successful. In marketing circles, we cal this line extension. For example, just because Startbucks is great at making coffee, it does not mean it should become a media company, as it is trying to do by creating its own music label. To me that’s dangerous and has a way to dilute the Starbucks brand. What’s next? Shoes?…

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