He has been in book publishing, public relations, and marketing for over two decades, the last thirteen years at Media Connect, formerly Planned Television Arts (PTA), the nation's largest and oldest book promoters. He’s also a published author and a blogger. He shares his wisdom on his site BookMarketingBuzzBlog, but I found this post informative and important enough to reprint here.
Battle for Book Sales Beyond Amazon
The marketplace for books - whether print, digital, or audio - is clearly owned by Amazon. They account for 27% of total units sold, as of October 1, 2012, according to RR Bowker. They improved from 21% a year earlier. Barnes & Noble declined to 16%, down from 17%. But after these two retailers, no single company scored in the double digits. In fact, no single category of sales channel hit double digits. Here's how the rest of the book marketplace breaks down:
· All independent bookstores, combined, account for only 6% of units sold
· Other e-book and audio download sites equal 6%
· Other ecommerce sites account for 6%
· All book clubs account for 5%
· Discount, closeout and thrift stores equal 5%
· Walmart - 4%
· Non-traditional bookstores - 3%
· Warehouse clubs - 3%
· Christian bookstores - 2%
· Target - 2%
· Books-A-Million - 2%
· Supermarkets - 1%
· All other means = 12%
The book marketing battlefield runs beyond bookstores or e-commerce sites. Books are everywhere and nowhere. But however they are sold, there is no doubt that sales will always be driven by savvy book marketing and the garnering of news media coverage. Word of mouth makes a big difference but only once there is a critical mass of interest that builds up form marketing exposure. Publishers and authors will continue to identify their target readers, sell their books everywhere in every form, and market to their core readers.
Promote - or perish!
If you're ready to get serious about book promotion, you can contact Brian:
Chief Marketing Officer
Senior Vice President
MEDIA CONNECT301 East 57th Street, 4th floor
New York, New York 10022