The new Tokyopop Website, launched last month, has added a number of new features, including community elements and exclusive manga that will be available only through the site.
Tokyopop Vice President Marketing Chip Meyers described the new site as 'MySpace meets IGN for the manga lifestyle,' and said that the new features that have been added are designed to build a large community of manga fans. User-created content including blogs, forums, fan art, videos, and Podcasts can now be posted on the site, and editorial features have been expanded.
Like Fox's plans for MySpace, the goal is to build the community of manga fans to as large a scale as possible and monetize the audience by advertising Tokyopop's products and selling ads to other interested companies, including Tokyopop's competitors.
In addition to making some manga available for reading online, the new Tokyopop site will also offer fans the ability to order some exclusive manga in book form that will not be available through retailers. The titles are a combination of never-before-released series and series that were launched through the trade that are now being converted to Web exclusives. Among the series that have previously been sold through retailers that are now being sold only through the Website are One, Neck and Neck, Heaven Above Heaven, Sorcerer Hunters Authentic Relaunch, Soul to Seoul, Dragon Head, Dragon Voice, and Arm of Kannon.
We interviewed Tokyopop Publisher Mike Kiley about the Website exclusives; click here for Part 1.