In a year-end letter to staff, Open Road Integrated Media CEO Paul Slavin praised ORIM employees for a year of “consistent and continuous revenue growth,” marked by a 23% increase in fouth quarter revenue and a 14% increase in gross profits.
Praising staff for performing “tremendously,” Slavin wrote that Open Road Integrated Media, an e-publishing and digital marketing operation, “showed better-than-expected earnings across the board in revenues from e-books, print, distribution, subsidiary rights, and affiliate.” The company reported an average quarterly revenue growth of about 8.5% and “year-over-year gross profits increased by nearly 14%," Slavin said.
ORIM specializes in publishing, marketing, and distributing a backlist of e-books by a distinctive group of acclaimed authors. Slavin highlighted “17 backlist e-books hitting the Wall Street Journal and New York Times bestseller lists.”
Pointing to ORIM’s founding principle—“you can bring great backlist to the forefront again”—Slavin said: “Our acquisitions selection process has been honed to a highly competitive edge, and thousands of backlist titles have undergone a complete transformation of descriptive copy, metadata, and cover design.”
Slavin credited 2016 growth to “strengthening our internal systems, pursuing a comprehensive data-driven transformation of our business, building a vital direct-to-consumer operation, and realigning our affinity content platforms.”
He described ORIM as a “media, marketing services, and direct-to-consumer business," and also credited the strategy of agile marketing—a company-wide attention to flexibility and adaptability—with the year’s successes. Agile marketing, he said, “identifies consumers and provides them with relevant messaging at critical points in their journey, which stimulates demand and purchase.”
Early Bird Books, ORIM’s daily deals e-book newsletter, generated the biggest growth in revenue, increasing by 232% year-over-year, which was 40% over budget. ORIM newsletters reach more than 650,000 consumers, and the company has more than 3 million social media followers. Direct-to-consumer businesses, Slavin said, contributed 7.6% of total revenue in 2016, and those businesses are expected to continue to offer “significant” growth in 2017.
ORIM also operates a network of genre-focused websites, among them the Line Up (True Crime/Horror) and the Portalist (science fiction/fantasy), that attracted 22 million users in 2016. Slavin cited the ORIM technology team, which developed Orion, a proprietary web platform that enables the company to create new consumer-focused websites. Slavin called these websites “highly effective customer-acquisition tools and are setting us on the path to develop and deliver key features and experiences that our customers trust and expect from ORIM.”
Slavin said that 2016 showed that “the implementation of our strategic priority to know and own the consumer is paying off.”
“This impressive effort in 2016 is the result of your flexibility, your commitment to growth, and your ability to embrace new ways of working,” he continued. “These are the foundations of a well-run operation, and it is much appreciated.”