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Old 02-10-2010, 01:32 PM   #1
kjk
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HuffPost: Book Publishers. Stop Scaring Me

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/susan-..._b_452164.html

Quote:
I attended O'Reilly's Tools of Change in Publishing conference last year. Since the 2010 event is right around the corner (Feb 22-24), I thought I'd dust off and update this post from my own blog, written after the 2009 conference.

I wrote it after coming home in shock. What I heard at the 2009 event was almost exactly what I heard at music business conferences circa 1999. I was looking around like, hey you people!! Doesn't anyone else notice this?? We all know how this story ends!! Tools of Change, indeed. I guess it depends on how you define "tools." Tools! You're about to go down the same road as the pony-tailed ones you look down your noses at.

Here goes:

Hello book publishers. You're starting to scare me.

Quote:
At Tools of Change, Sara Lloyd of Pan-MacMillan nailed it when she said, "Publishers understand markets, but not customers." As anyone in the music business could have told you years ago, the customer is now a human being, and publishers--who still see retail as their customers--don't know how to build products for individuals who might want to discuss, interact with, congregate around, or add their own $0.02 to the content. The customer has stepped out of the bookstore and into the foyer of the publishing houses, they are knocking on the doors of authors, and asking to be addressed as individuals. They will consent to purchase, not when coerced by a front-of-the-store display or fabulous media coverage, but when their friends start talking about how awesome/helpful/inspiring/powerful the actual book itself is.
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Old 02-10-2010, 02:25 PM   #2
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I'm curious: Does anyone have figures on the amount of new books released (to see how this number is changing), and on how the industry is earning its money? (i.e., are they really making more from the top titles while making less from everything else?)
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