Publisher members of the Audit Bureau of Circulations and ABC Interactive are implementing plans for harnessing the mobile market’s potential and focusing on strategies that increase revenue from the distribution channel. And they’ve found that Apple currently leads the pack of manufacturers offering e-reader and tablet devices, but some concerns may drive publishers to other devices.

Eighty-six percent of respondents said that Apple is the e-reader manufacturer most likely to impact the publishing market. However, only 11% of survey respondents said they were satisfied with the analytics and subscriber data they receive from Apple. Only 19% said they were content with Apple’s app business model.

According to the new survey from ABC and ABCi, “Going Mobile: How Publishers Are Solidifying Strategies and Adapting to the Mobile Market” (, publishers see digital distribution of their publication as an increasingly important element of their strategic future and are actively pursuing the new dissemination methods offered by mobile websites, e-readers and tablets, and smart phones to reach a new generation of consumers. Highlights of the survey are:

° Mobile continues to receive more attention at newspapers, consumer magazines and business publications this year than last. Last year, 70% said mobile was receiving more attention at their publication; this year the number increased to 87%. Sixty-five percent believe that digital delivery of their publication is important to their strategic future, up from 55% last year.

° Despite the increased focus on the mobile market, publishers still believe that their print publication is valuable and will continue to exist. Seventy-eight percent of respondents overwhelmingly disagreed that their publications would be delivered in a digital-only format within the next five years. 

° E-readers are clearly making their impact this year with the introduction of the Apple iPad and other tablet devices. In 2009, 42% of respondents believed that e-readers would become vital distribution channels for their publication. This year, that number jumped to 63%.

° Survey respondents continue to list Apple as the number one e-reader manufacturer expected to impact the publishing market, but Google/Android makes a strong survey debut in second place, followed closely by

° All of ABC’s publisher members are experimenting with charging for mobile content. Forty-three percent of consumer magazines said they currently charge for mobile apps, followed by 39 percent of business publications and 21 percent of newspapers.

° Publishers are optimistic about their ability to monetize mobile content. Thirty-seven percent expect mobile to significantly impact their revenue in just two years.