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10 characteristics of successful information providers

Creating high value information products is an aspiration for many B2B and academic publishers. What does it take to be successful?

By James Evelegh

10 characteristics of successful information providers

This week, I interviewed 67 Bricks’ Will Bailey and Jennifer Schivas for the next instalment of their (sponsored) thought leadership series which will appear in the March / April issue of InPublishing magazine. (The first instalment can be read here.)

The upcoming article will be a deep dive into creating blended content and data products. From our conversation, I spotted ten characteristics of publishers who have successfully transitioned to high value information providers.


  1. Know where their value lies and who values it.
  2. Know where all their data is and have brought it together into a unified data pool.
  3. Adopt a “blended” approach to data and content. They no longer sell big static data sets and accompanying 400 page PDF reports. They blend their content and data, so as to provide their customers with the information they need, in the form they need it and at the time they want it. It’s a more personalised offering.
  4. Reinvent themselves. They no longer see themselves as publishers pushing out content, but as intelligence platforms providing answers.
  5. Restructure their commercial teams so that they are equipped and incentivised to sell the new-style data products not the old.
  6. Regularly involve their users in the process of product design and development.
  7. Foster a collaborative culture, where their business and technical teams work together on new projects from the get-go.
  8. Are agile and embrace change. They know that information products must constantly evolve.
  9. Aren’t phased by AI. They know it’s a huge business enabler not only for themselves but also for their current and future competitors. AI lowers the barriers to entry so forces switched-on information providers to continuously try to up their game.
  10. Didn’t get stuck at first base. They were ambitious, they knew they had something of value to offer, they knew they had to change to realise it, and they knew there were risks. They could have succumbed to analysis paralysis, but they didn’t. They cracked on and are now reaping the rewards.

Does all that describe your company? If so, then you’re in an exciting place.

You can catch James Evelegh’s regular column in the InPubWeekly newsletter, which you can register to receive here.