How Osborne Books uses FlippingBook Salespal to deliver e-books to their customers’ devices
Osborne Books is a market-leading publisher of educational accounting resources in the UK. They provide training centers, instructors, and students all over the world high-value study texts for a range of accounting qualifications. In addition to making top-notch materials, Osborne Books serves their customers by using the latest innovations to make the educational process easy and comfortable.
Recently, Maz Loton, a Digital Products Manager at Osborne Books, began receiving more calls from current and potential customers for an e-book format. E-books represent a huge trend that isn’t going anywhere, and people kept pointing out features they could use with textbooks on their tablets or smartphones.
For instructors, access to e-books provided an excellent opportunity for in-class use. Students wanted the ability to always have important materials on hand without having to carry around heavy physical copies all the time.
Furthermore, distance learners and distance learning centers reached out to Osborne Books with the same demands. These potential customers needed e-book versions because ordering and receiving physical books took some time. With digital versions, they could start using the material right away.
Looking for solution
“We wanted our customers to be able to take the books with them, so delivering them to mobile devices seemed reasonable,” says Maz. “We considered going with PDF and Adobe, but it was too insecure. I’ve investigated Amazon for a long time. But it turned out to be really costly, and as a result, we weren’t making any money doing it that way.”
Osborne Books turned to FlippingBook to help them provide their customers with e-books through a custom mobile app available in the AppStore and the Google Play Market for smartphones and tablets.
Their key requirements were as follows:
- protect materials from uncontrolled sharing and downloading;
- give people a comfortable reading experience including text searches, note taking, and highlighting;
- make it easy to access e-books offline so students and instructors could use them in class and on the go;
- API integration with Osborne Books’ servers to provide customers with a single login and password for their personal accounts on the Osborne Books website and mobile apps;
- sync important information (e.g., highlights and notes) between different devices so readers can use the same e-book on their tablets and smartphones.
The FlippingBook team had a great time working with Osborne Books. Our aim was to provide a technically superb product that is easy to use and manage.
Osborne Books’ customers use e-books to check and review materials on the go. They can usually only access materials at their schools or learning centers, so they appreciate the ability to access the material offline on their devices. They can also access the materials on up to three devices, and the content sync feature allows them to start reading on a smartphone or tablet and continue reading the online version on a PC.
The e-books in the app include all the “must-have” features that make the reading experience pleasant. Text searching and bookmarking make it easy to navigate around the textbook. With the highlighting and note-taking features, users can mark the most important information and quickly get back to it if needed.
Because Osborne Books provides educational materials, including a check-mark option was a good idea. Educational materials often include a “self-revision” part, and students can check answers right in their e-books which is quite convenient, if they don’t have a physical copy on hand.
The overall user feedback has been very positive. The app has a 4.5-star rating on the AppStore and a 4.4-star rating on the Play Market. The positive reviews keep coming.
On the back end, Osborne Books has a very smooth system for managing their e-books. Thanks to API integration, any user who buys a title from the Osborne Books website gets a unified login and password for his or her personal space on the website and Salespal. When the user logs in to Salespal, all his or her purchased e-books are waiting there.
If access to any book needs to be revoked, the Osborne Books team can do so in real time. They also don’t have to worry about uncontrolled sharing of their e-books because the materials are protected from unwanted sharing and are only allowed on up to three devices. Thus, Osborne Books can give a nice bonus to their customers without any risk of the material being leaked.
Using FlippingBook Salespal gave Osborne Books a competitive edge with their existing and potential customers.
We’ve beaten our competitors by providing this service; it’s one of the things that pushed us ahead.
Salespal has proven to be what Osborne Books’ customers have been looking for: the ability to use a physical book in combination with an e-book version, which makes the educational materials much more convenient and accessible. In addition, FlippingBook Salespal helped Osborne Books open up opportunities to new clients and possibilities.
Salespal totally met the demand. People are loving it, so in the sense of feedback that we’re getting, it’s been brilliant. It has helped us provide materials to distance learning centers, which we couldn’t do before. So, we have a bit more work now as we have more customers on board, so I would say our opportunities have definitely expanded and our relationships with certain customers have improved.