The Publishing Industry is Dead: True or False?
The Death & Rebirth of Publishing
The Publishing Industry is Dead: True or False ?
Printed pages have been with us since around 1450 A.D. After 561 years, you might think that people would be slow to accept innovation. However, the sale of an estimated 4 million Amazon Kindle e-readers has put paid to any such illusions.
Barely into Q2, and 2011 has already been a rough year for traditional book retailers. In February, Borders filed for bankruptcy, saying that it would close about a third of its stores. And despite its major competitor being on the rocks, Barnes & Noble stock continues to drop.Long Live Publishing –and Self Publishing
While retailers struggle and fold, there might yet be new opportunities for publishers and authors alike. A publishing phoenix may still rise from the ashes.
It was in July 2010 that ebooks started outselling hardcovers on Amazon. So it’s hardly surprising that publishing houses are moving to embrace the ebook more wholeheartedly.
The economics of ebook publishing have already attracted new market entrants: publishers that specialize in ebooks for eReaders, tablets, and smart phones.
These economics have not only inspired publishing houses to rethink their business model and new competition to take them on. It’s also created a new, independent breed of author. The New Author
In January, 2010, the Huffington Post drew attention to Amanda Hocking, a 26 year-old self-publishing fiction author who has written 17 novels, published 8, and sold over 185,000 copies since April 2010 along. Hocking also topped the list of Kindle indie authors in December 2010, selling 100,000 copies in just one month. Where Publishers Can Still Thrive
Of course, the success of these new indie authors are constrained by two market realities. First, these authors are early adopters; the pioneers who will get to claim a disproportionate stake of the frontier. Second, the publishing houses are moving in. As they do, they will flood the market with more titles, meaning that any aspiring author will again rely on a big backer for the one thing they can’t do on their own: the marketing.
Essentially, as the ebook market gets crowded, standing out in the crowd will be that much harder, and the value proposition that publishing houses will offer authors will be less about distribution and more about marketing & promotion.What Next for Bookstores - Best Practice
Barnes & Noble has embraced e-book technology. Anyone who buys the Barnes & Noble eReader, called the Nook, can take it into any Barnes & Noble, connect to the free Internet available and read any book in the store for free. This way, people are still enticed to go to the store, where they can lounge with their latte and book or Nook.
The Death & Rebirth of Publishing was originally published in Future Perspective, a Burson-Marsteller newsletter.Download Future Perspective