Monday, July 30, 2012

Myth: Print Media is Dead

Our town is home to Powell's City of Books and the Espresso Book Machine so we find this expectation of print media being replaced completely by virtual media a bit silly to consider.

On 7/18/12 the Publisher Lunch (a free news email distribution) recapped the industry dollars for 2011:
According to their extrapolations, the overall US publishing business inclusive of all sectors (trade, educational, professional, scholarly, etc.) accounted for $27.2 billion in sales, down roughly 2.5 percent from $27.94 billion in 2010, though unit sales grew by 3.4 percent. 
Later in the article:
eBooks vaulted to the largest-selling format for adult fiction, comprising 31 percent of dollar sales. Adult fiction ebooks went from $585 million in 2010 to $1.27 billion in 2011. 
This data confirms the business of books has had a 2-4% change which is a lot because it relates to billions of dollars. However, the huge increase in adult fiction eBooks represents new readers and devices not a shift from one to the other. Maybe only half of that 31% would have purchased a print book in 2011 but instead, they had a new toy in their hand and zippy wireless downloads of stories they hadn't even known were available to read.

As we determined in our May 7th post: Social Media is NOT All You Need, how readers find books for their reading pleasure is not changing as quickly as the electronic industry advertises. Free local newspapers are still flourishing, according to what arrives in our mailboxes and are stacked in lobbies of many public venues.

The death of Borders caused ripples of doom and gloom throughout the publishing industry but we believe that was more a case of big business gone bad that has nothing to do with books or the future of print media. Instead we envision the smaller, local bookstores being reborn. These may have the flavor of a B&N mega store with coffee shops, comfy chairs, and music sections but there may also be ebook kiosks.

Or their could be racks, like currently hold greeting cards or postcards, that are display stands for all those lovely brochures, free-read booklets, pamphlets, and bookmarks as have been the focus of some workshop posts here at AM101.

This blog is an electronic form of - Print Media - even though it lacks the touch of newsprint on your fingers.

Any marketing questions can be posed in the comments on any post. If you have a question, others will too, so we can address our answers to all. Our posts are myths and tips we want to share but we love to target our answers to specific questions.

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