Smart Publishing

Digital printing is helping publishers and book producers not only meet the challenges of shorter print-runs and declining page volumes, but also develop new types of books while understanding how to create a more sustainable value-chain.
Smart books and dynamic publishing


The changing book lifecycle

Over the last few decades book publishing has been in a state of almost continuous transition, one that has left its mark on all the market players: authors, publishers, print service providers (PSPs), distributors, wholesalers, retailers and readers.

While order volumes increase, print runs are largely getting smaller. For publishers, that means there’s a need to embrace shorter print runs and on-demand print capabilities to maintain a profit margin. Readers’ expectations have changed, too. More consumers demand individualised content and experiences, which make single editions, customised products, and limited runs undeniable growth opportunities.

A successful future requires collaboration – between publisher and PSP, and PSP and manufacturer – to create new partnerships that automate the whole value-chain. With partnerships in place, we can create innovative business models that are not only more resilient, but also more sustainable.

Future Book Forum

Explore the trends and technologies uniting authors, book publishers, book printers, bookshops and readers, from tips for promoting profitable growth, to the development of new sustainable practices.

Man speaking at the Future Book Forum
Person reading about the future of the book in the digital world

The Publishing 2030 Accelerator

Canon is a proud signatory of the Publishing 2030 Accelerator. Alongside publishing industry leaders, we are putting sustainability at the heart of our book publishing solutions, ensuring that we are collaborating with the publishing value chain to promote a sustainable future.

The Publishing 2030 Accelerator is committed to climate action with three initial workstreams: calculating the carbon footprint of an individual book, distributed printing, and reimagining the accounting of revenues. Members of the accelerator have signed the five-point Manifesto committing to take responsibility, drive change, accelerate action, share experiences, and hold each other accountable for progress on climate.

Think Books: What’s next for book publishing

Find out how the biggest trends in the book industry are driving innovation – from digital short run printing to dynamic publishing.

Person reading about The Publishing 2023 Accelerator


Learn more about how your business can benefit from a Smart Publishing Solution.

Canon is focused on understanding the needs of us, the printer, of the publishers and of the distributors to help improve the supply chain."

Grupo Planeta and Liber Digital at Future Book Forum 2020

The publishing triangle of expertise

Until recent years, the go-to-market strategy for publishers was to print, then sell. Based on sales predictions, thousands of books would be produced on offset presses – providing the best margin for the run lengths involved – and then shipped to retailers, in whatever numbers were ordered.

This often meant that publishers had to warehouse thousands of books at a cost and accept the risk that not all of the copies produced might be sold, resulting in reduced profits in either – or both – cases. However, with automated stock replenishment systems and digital print technology enabling short-run production, publishers can now be much more flexible on the number of copies they have to produce at any one time.

Although moving from a traditional business model may seem daunting, as Grupo Planeta and Liber Digital have learnt, with partners by your side who understand your and your customer’s challenges and aspirations, it can be made simple. Guidance and expertise from Liber Digital enabled Grupo Planeta to overcome challenges, significantly reduce time-to-market, better manage their inventory and meet customer expectations.

Learn more about the Triangle of Expertise, the collaboration between printer, publisher and technology provider, in this case study.

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Case Studies

  • Embracing digital print for book lifecycle management - Case Study

    Otava transfered a significant percentage of all production from offset to on-demand printing with a view towards shorter-runs and improved book lifecycle management in the future.

  • Elanders group achieves growth ambitions with inkjet

    How inkjet helped Elanders to achieve much higher volume production, much better-quality production and much higher run time.

  • Exakta Print improves profits with short-run printing

    By investing in the Canon ProStream and ColorStream, Andersson and his production team have overcome their profitability and productivity challenges.

  • Making digital strategy a reality in print

    Book specialist Livonia Print makes digital vision reality with Canon.

  • Related Products and Solutions

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  • varioPRINT iX-series

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  • varioPRINT 6000 TITAN Series

    Combine offset-like monochrome printing with low power consumption, minimal noise and ozone emissions.
  • Work professional using PRISMAproduction to streamline workflows


    Streamline workflows and accelerate production efficiency with the high-performance workflow and output management platform PRISMAproduction.
  • Explore Further

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